Russian President Vladimir Putin said in an interview broadcast Sunday that the media was trying to "create a sensation out of nothing" over Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner, saying it was "amazing" that it was used against the president.
When asked if Trump's son-in-law and White House adviser Kushner discussed setting up a special communications channel with Russian officials, Putin told NBC's Megyn Kelly in an interview on "Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly" that "There's nothing to even talk about. There wasn't even any kind of specific discussions about sanctions or anything else. For me, this is just amazing. You create a sensation out of nothing. And, out of this sensation, you turn it into a weapon of war against the current president," Putin said.
Putin said "no proposal like that came to me" involving Kushner and that it would have been reported to him if there had been "anything significant."
As for claims of Russia hacking into the 2016 U.S. presidential election, Putin maintained U.S. intelligence agencies and congressional committees looking into the matter had been "misled."
"They have been misled. And, they aren't analyzing the information in its entirety. I haven't seen even once any direct proof of Russian interference in the presidential election in the United States," he said.
Putin explained that "hackers can be anywhere" and even went so far as to suggest it could have taken place within the United States.
"Hackers can be anywhere. They can be in Russia, in Asia, even in America, Latin America. There can even be hackers, by the way, in the United States who very skillfully and professionally shifted the blame, as we say, onto Russia.
"There is a theory that Kennedy's assassination was arranged by the United States intelligence services. So, if this theory is correct, and that can't be ruled out, then what could be easier in this day and age than using all the technical means at the disposal of the intelligence services and using those means to organize some attacks and then pointing the finger at Russia?" he said.
Putin also explained the U.S. interfered in elections in countries around the world.
"I will tell you something that you probably already know. I don't want to hurt anyone's feelings, but the United States, everywhere, all over the world actively interferes with the electoral campaigns of other countries. Put you finger anywhere on the map of the world and everywhere you will hear complaints that American officials are interfering in internal electoral processes," he said.
Putin also explained that in the U.S. "presidents come and go" and that Russia didn't care who was president, saying it "wouldn't make sense" for them to interfere with elections.
Putin stated flatly that "there were no meetings" between himself and Trump and that they "didn't have any relationship at all" with him and were not holding any kind of information that could reflect negatively on him.
"I never met with him," he said. "Have you all lost your senses over there?"
Kelly also broached the subject of Russian oppression among its own people. Putin said Russia was operating on a "democratic path" and was somewhat offput to be asked about the subject.
"I want to say that Russia is developing along a democratic path. That is certain. And, no one should have any doubt about that.
"Why do feel you have the right to ask us these kind of questions? And, do it all the time. To moralize and to give us lessons on how to live. We're ready to listen to comments when, if done constructively with the goal of establishing a relationship, creating a common environment," he said.
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