Sergey Lavrov ′bewildered′ by anti-Trump accusations | News | DW | 12.07.2017
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Sergey Lavrov 'bewildered' by anti-Trump accusations

The scandal surrounding the meeting of Donald Trump Jr and a Russian lawyer is "making a mountain out of a molehill," said Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. He denied knowing of the meeting before the news broke.

Sergey Lavrov defended Donald Trump's son on Wednesday and said he had learnt of his meeting with Natalia Veselnitskaya "from television."

The media storm surrounding the meeting was an attempt "by serious people to make a mountain out of a molehill," the Kremlin's top diplomat said after meeting his Belgian counterpart, Didier Reynerds, in Brussels.

"I was bewildered to find out that the Russian lawyer and Donald Trump's son are being blamed for meeting each other. I find that to be vicious. What could be the problem for anyone to meet with a lawyer?" he said.

Previously, Donald Trump Jr said he met with Veselnitskaya because he was told by his contact Rob Goldstone she might have some damaging information on Hillary Clinton. The "high level and sensitive information" was part of "Russia and its government's support for Mr. Trump," Goldstone said in an email published by Donald Trump Jr himself.

However, the president's son said he received no discriminating info and described the meeting as a "wasted 20 minutes."

On Wednesday, Donald Trump tweeted to support his son, decrying the scandal as the "greatest Witch Hunt in political history."

Attempt to 'redo' the election

On Wednesday, Lavrov once again denied the accusations of Russian meddling and asked for "at least one fact" to prove it.

"We haven't seen a single fact," Lavrov told reporters. "If the journalists are ready to operate on mere accusations and not ready to take into account that there are no facts, there is nothing I can do about it."

Russia believes that the accusations are an attempt to "redo the results of the election, that was won by Donald Trump," he added.

Commenting on election meddling issue, Belgian Foreign Minister Reynerds responded with a joke.

"I have explained to Sergey that we do not have any elections scheduled before 2019, so there are no problems yet," he told reporters.

Moscow repeatedly denied having any links with the lawyer and ridiculed claims of Veselnitskaya working for the government as "inappropriate and absurd." The lawyer also said she never had any damaging information on Hillary Clinton.

dj/rt (Reuters, Interfax)