Russian foreign minister dismisses US election disruption charges as ‘just blabber’

Chloe Chaplain
Dismissive: Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov: AP

Russia's foreign minister has dismissed charges against 13 Russians accused of an elaborate plot to disrupt the US presidential election as "just blabber".

The federal indictment brought on Friday by special counsel Robert Mueller represents the most detailed allegations to date of illegal Russian meddling during 2016 Trump campaign.

But when asked about the explosive charges at the Munich Security Conference, Russia’s Sergey Lavrov said that he would not comment until he is presented with “the facts”.

"I have no response,” he said. “You can publish anything, and we see those indictments multiplying, the statements multiplying."

'Babble': Sergey Lavrov delivers a speech at the 2018 Munich Security Conference (Getty Images)

He argued that US officials, including Vice President Mike Pence, have repeatedly insisted that no country influenced the US election results.

"Until we see the facts, everything else is just blabber - I'm sorry for this expression," Mr Lavrov said.

The 13 are charged with running a huge but hidden social media trolling campaign aimed in part at helping Republican Donald Trump defeat Democrat Hillary Clinton.

The announcement marks the first criminal charges against Russians believed to have secretly worked to influence the outcome.

According to the indictment, the Russian organisation was funded by Yevgeny Prigozhin - a wealthy St Petersburg businessman with ties to President Vladimir Putin.

Mr Lavrov denounced "this irrational myth about this global Russian threat, traces of which are found everywhere - from Brexit to the Catalan referendum".

Meanwhile, President Trump has said the indictment shows his campaign did "nothing wrong".

He tweeted saying that there was “no collusion”, but suggested that there was truth behind the allegations.

Russia started their anti-UK campaign in 2014, long before I announced that I would run for President,” he wrote.

“The results of the election were not impacted. The Trump campaign did nothing wrong – no collusion!”

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