US president Donald Trump

US and Russian presidents have discussed the special counsel Robert Mueller’s report on Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election campaign in an hour-long phone call.

Iran Press/America: In an hour-long “very good talk” on Friday, Russia’s president “sort of smiled” about Robert Mueller’s conclusions, Trump told reporters at the White House.

According to a Guardian report, Donald Trump added: “Vladimir Putin said something to the effect that it started off as a mountain and ended up being a mouse”.

When a journalist asked Trump if he told Putin “not to meddle in the next election”, the president called the reporter “very rude” and said: “We didn’t discuss that.”

Mueller’s report concluded that Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election was “sweeping and systematic”, and included a description of the extensive efforts Russia took to interfere in the 2016 election, including the 25 Russians indicted for that effort.

Mueller’s investigation did find multiple contacts between the Trump presidential campaign staff and the Russian government. The report concluded that “the Russian government perceived it would benefit from a Trump presidency and worked to secure that outcome, and that the Trump Campaign expected it would benefit electorally from information stolen and released through Russian efforts”.

Donald Trump has repeatedly declined to publicly rebuff Vladimir Putin for the 2016 operation. After the call, Trump tweeted that he and Putin had discussed the “Russian Hoax” among other topics.

“As I have always said, long before the Witch Hunt started, getting along with Russia, China, and everyone is a good thing, not a bad thing,” he tweeted.

The White House press secretary, Sarah Sanders, later said Trump didn’t tell Putin not to meddle in the 2020 election because he’s made that clear in the past. “He doesn’t need to do that every two seconds,” she said.


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