U.S. defense Minister denounces Russia´s attempt to intervene in mid-state elections

Washington _ Agencies

US Defense secretary Jim Mathis denounced Russia's attempt to "intervene" in the mid-state elections held early last month, in a way similar to what she did in the 2016 presidential election that brought President Donald Trump to the White House.

Matisse said at the Reagan National Defense Forum in California on Saturday that the strained relations between Washington and Moscow have "undoubtedly worsened" due to Russia's ongoing attempts to intervene in the US elections.

He added that Russian President Vladimir Putin "has tried again to intervene in our elections last month and we see constant attempts in this regard."

Putin "continued efforts to try to corrupt the democratic processes that we must defend," he said.

"We will do whatever is necessary to defend them," he said, referring to western democracies.

Mathis's remarks came after Trump cancelled a scheduled meeting with Putin at the G20 leaders summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina, due to Russian military intervention in Ukraine.

Before the mid-term elections, Facebook and Twitter closed thousands of accounts managed by Russia, while the US authorities charged 14 people with the Russian Internet research agency.

The US authorities at the time warned that "Americans should be careful that foreign and Russian parties in particular continue to seek to influence public sentiment and the attitudes of voters through actions aimed at spreading the band."

The Ministry of Justice indicted Russian Internet research agency president Willy Josenova days before the congressional midterm elections on 6 November (November), becoming the first person to be indicted on the issue of Russian intervention in the US election.

Moscow denounced the US action against Khuseyinova, arguing that the accusations against it were fabricated in order to impose further sanctions on Russia.

Trump himself is facing an investigation into whether his aides met with Russian agents to influence the U.S. presidential election in 2016.


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