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Vladimir Putin: Accusations that we hacked US election are 'like anti-Semitism'

  • Vladimir Putin angrily denies allegations that Russia interfered in the U.S. election.
  • He alleges that the U.S. intelligence community does not have evidence to back up its conclusion that Russia tried to swing the election.

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday angrily denied allegations that Moscow meddled in the 2016 U.S. election, even comparing rhetoric about Russia to "anti-Semitism."

"It's like anti-Semitism," he said, comparing Russia's critics to people who would say things like "the Jews are to blame."

Through a live translation in the televised interview with NBC News' Megyn Kelly, Putin alleged that U.S. spies have "no specific evidence, no facts, just assumptions and allegations" to back their conclusion that the Kremlin attempted to assist Donald Trump in the election.

Pressed about the evidence, Putin argued that IP addresses could be manufactured and quipped that a 3-year-old could have hacked U.S. institutions.

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaking June 2, 2017.
Sergei Savostyanov | TASS | Host Photo Agency | Pool | Reuters
Russian President Vladimir Putin speaking June 2, 2017.

The FBI, CIA and NSA concluded in a January report that Putin's regime used hackers, Kremlin agencies and paid online "trolls" to undermine the U.S. election and help Trump win. Congress and the FBI are investigating that alleged effort and possible ties between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin.

Trump has dismissed the ongoing investigation as "a lame excuse for why the Dems lost the election."

In the interview at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, a visibly irritated Putin also denied reports that the Trump team had moved to lift the sanctions in place against Russia.

He said that "this hysteria" about Trump and Russia "never seems to stop" and asked if a "pill" existed to stop the hysteria.

Putin contended that there were "no agreements whatsoever" to lift sanctions.

In its final days, the Obama administration imposed additional sanctions on Moscow in response to accusations by U.S. intelligence agencies and others that Russian had tried to subvert the election.

The U.S. and European countries already had sanctions in place against Russia for pressing a war in Ukraine and then annexing the Ukrainian province of Crimea.

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