Russian President Vladimir Putin said Wednesday that he is ready to provide the U.S. Senate a transcript of last week's controversial Oval Office meeting between President Trump and Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov that is at the center of allegations that Trump revealed highly classified information.
"If the U.S. administration considers it possible, we are ready to submit a transcript of Lavrov’s talk with Trump to the U.S. Senate and Congress, if, of course, the U.S. administration would want this," Putin said, according to the Russian-owned Tass news agency.
Putin's comments came during a joint news conference in the Black Sea resort of Sochi with visiting Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni.
Trump has come under fire following news reports that he shared sensitive intelligence about the Islamic State militants with Lavrov and Russian ambassador Sergei Kislyak during a meeting at the White House.
Putin said he had “no other explanation” as to why Trump has come under attack over the alleged incident other than “political schizophrenia,” according to the Russian Interfax news agency.
The Russian president said he initially found debates about Russia’s meddling in U.S. politics as “funny” but said Moscow is now “concerned because it’s hard to imagine what the people who produce such nonsense can come up with next.”
He dismissed U.S. politicians — unnamed — as either being “stupid” or “dangerous and unscrupulous” who are wittingly “causing the damage to their own country.”
Asked what he thinks of the Trump presidency, Putin said it’s up to the American people to judge but that his performance can be rated “only when he’s allowed to work at full capacity,” implying that someone is hampering Trump’s efforts.
The White House on Tuesday defended Trump discussing with the Russians an Islamic State group terror threat related to the use of laptop computers on aircraft.
Speaking to Russian news agencies on Wednesday Yuri Ushakov, a Putin aide, earlier would not comment the contents of last week’s talks among Trump, Lavrov and Kislyak.
Ushakov said “any contacts” with the U.S. president are “important” but he would not reply to the question whether the classified information that Trump reportedly shared with Lavrov and Kislyak was valuable for Russia.
Contributing: Associated Press
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