Kremlin denies gathering dossier on Donald Trump

Moscow, Wednesday

The Kremlin today denied claims that Russia gathered compromising information on US President-elect Donald Trump, saying they were aimed at damaging Moscow’s relations with Washington.

“The Kremlin does not have compromising information on Trump,” President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists. He called the claims, published by US media outlet Buzzfeed and attributed to a former British intelligence operative a “total fake” and “an obvious attempt to harm our bilateral relations”.

The claims are aimed at “keeping relations (with the United States) in a state of deterioration,” instead of becoming constructive, Peskov said.

He also denied allegations that the Kremlin gathered compromising information on the Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton, saying that “the Kremlin does not work on gathering compromising information”. The Kremlin spokesman described the dossier as “pulp fiction,” adding that “undoubtedly you need to react to this with a degree of humour”.

But he said that it showed that “there are people whipping up hysteria in order to maintain this atmosphere of a witch hunt”. He spoke after Trump on Twitter called the allegations “a total political witch hunt.”

The Kremlin works to “arrange relations of the Russian president with our Western partners firstly in the interests of the Russian people and secondly in the interests of global peace and security,” Peskov insisted.

Meanwhile, Trump is expected to hold his first news conference in nearly six months today, amid explosive allegations over his ties to Russia, a little more than a week before his inauguration.

Citing “multiple” unnamed US officials with direct knowledge of the meeting, CNN said intelligence chiefs presented a two-page synopsis on the potential embarrassment for America’s incoming 45th president.

President Barack Obama, who delivered his farewell address late yesterday, was also briefed on the issue, CNN reported, giving no details of the allegedly compromising information.

Several US media outlets published — without confirming its authenticity — a 35-page dossier on which the synopsis is based, and which had been circulating in Washington circles. —AFP

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