Trump Says US Intel Has 'Absolutely No Evidence' Hacking Affected Election
16:35 07.01.2017(updated 18:30 07.01.2017)
US President-elect Donald Trump stated on Saturday that the US intelligence services "stated very strongly there was absolutely no evidence" that alleged Russia's hacking affected the results of the presidential election as voting machines had not been hacked.
"Intelligence stated very strongly there was absolutely no evidence that hacking affected the election results. Voting machines not touched!" Donald Trump said via Twitter.
On Friday, the US Intelligence Community released a public version of the comprehensive intelligence report assessing alleged Russia's activities and intentions related to the 2016 US presidential election.
After receiving an intelligence briefing on the report, Trump said the election outcome had not been affected. US House of Representatives Speaker Paul Ryan also suggested that the assessment should not be used by partisans to delegitimize Trump's presidency.
Russian authorities have repeatedly denied the US allegations calling them absurd and characterizing them as an attempt to divert public opinion from revelations of corruption as well as other pressing domestic issues.
The US president-elect also stated on Saturday that he believes that the issue of the alleged hack of the US Democratic National Committee (DNC) is being discussed only because the Democratic Party is "totally embarrassed" because of US presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's loss in the election.
"Only reason the hacking of the poorly defended DNC is discussed is that the loss by the Dems was so big that they are totally embarrassed!"
In December, media reported that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) suspects that Russia had interfered in the course of US presidential election, hacking mail servers of US citizens and organizations, including the DNC. The agency claimed that Moscow had targeted the presidential campaign of the Democratic Party's Hillary Clinton, because it wanted Trump to win. At the same time, the FBI has reportedly reached opposite conclusions from the same raw intelligence.
On December 29, US outgoing President Barack Obama announced the expulsion of 35 Russian diplomats, the closing of two Russian diplomatic compounds in Maryland and New York and new sanctions against six Russian individuals and five entities over Moscow's alleged interference in the November US presidential election.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said that Russia "will not expel anyone" in response to US sanctions and will determine further steps in restoring ties with the United States depending on the policy of President-elect Donald Trump.
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