13 Russians, along with three Russian companies, have been accused of interfering in the US 2016 election, though without the help of any Americans (of course, including President Donald Trump).
This announcement came from Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
One company involved in this accusation, the St. Petersburg based Internet Research Agency, is said to have ‘had a strategic goal to sow discord in the US political system, including the 2016 US presidential election.’
Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, speaking at a news conference, clarified that no American was ‘a knowing participant in this illegal activity’ and that the interference did not alter the outcome of the election.
President Trump, responding to these charges, acknowledged that interference has been taking place for some time but highlighted the fact the result of the 2016 US election was not impacted as a result of this.
‘Russia started their anti-US campaign in 2014, long before I announced that I would run for President,’ he tweeted. ‘The results of the election were not impacted. The Trump campaign did nothing wrong – no collusion!’
Certain Russian politicians have (unsurprisingly) been very critical of the charges made against certain Russian citizens and companies.
Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Facebook that the allegations are ‘absurd’:
’13 people interfered in the U.S. elections?! 13 against an intelligence services budget of billions? Against intelligence and counterintelligence, against the latest developments and technologies? Absurd? Yes.’
More to follow.