- President Donald Trump said Russia and the US were “equally accountable” for unspecified transgressions during a press conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
- He also attacked special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into Russian meddling and repeated his claim that there was “no collusion” between his campaign and Russia.
- The two leaders met Monday for a bilateral summit in Finland.
In a freewheeling joint press conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin, President Donald Trump declined to say whether he held Russia accountable for anything, instead blaming both Russia and the US for unspecified transgressions.
When a reporter asked Trump if he held Russia accountable for “anything in particular,” Trump declined to call out Russia for meddling in the 2016 election, responding, “Yes, I do, I hold both countries responsible. I think the United States has been foolish. I think we’ve all been foolish.”
He didn’t say what he held both the US and Russia responsible for, but said a dialogue should have been had “a long time ago,” before he got to office.
“I think that we’re all to blame,” Trump said. “I think that the United States now has stepped forward, along with Russia, and we’re getting together and we have a chance to do some great things.”
He went on to say that he felt the US and Russia have “both made some mistakes,” calling special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into Russian election interference a “disaster” for the US.
“I think it’s kept us apart,” Trump said. “It’s kept us separated. There was no collusion at all. Everybody knows it.”
This comment follows a Monday morning tweet from Trump before his summit with Putin.
“Our relationship with Russia has NEVER been worse thanks to many years of U.S. foolishness and stupidity and now, the Rigged Witch Hunt!”, Trump tweeted, to which the Russian foreign ministry added in its own tweet, “we agree.”
Since Mueller indicted 12 Russian security officers for hacking the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton’s campaign on Friday, Trump has pointed blame at former President Barack Obama, contradicting his own intelligence agencies in refusing to admit the meddling even occurred.
Watch Trump’s comments on holding Russia accountable below:
Reporter: Do you hold Russia accountable for anything?
Trump: We’re all to blame pic.twitter.com/nFoSS7UVCK
— POLITICO (@politico) July 16, 2018
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