In his annual, multi-hour, Q&A press conference, Russian President Vladimir Putin took questions from a hoard of foreign journalists.
Topics spanned from Syria and Ukraine to China's One-Belt-One-Road, and from Russian general elections to the US withdrawal from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, but what most have focused on were his comments on President Trump and the Russiagate debacle...
US based ABC News (of recent infamy for a massive fake news gaffe) asked President Putin about the ongoing ‘Russiagate’ scandal with Donald Trump. The Russian President said the following:
"It’s up to the American people to assess Trump, not me. But look at the markets, they are up, indicating investors trust him. We also respect the US opposition. I don’t know if Trump still has the same desire to cooperate closely with us, but I hope we can work closely on a range of issues.”
Turning to so-called Trump collusion with Russia, Putin said,
“That’s been invented by those aiming to de-legitimize Trump. These people don’t understand they are undermining their own country, they aren’t showing respect for Americans that voted for Trump”.
Finally, turning to contacts between Russian diplomats and Americans, ABC asked "How would you explain the number of contacts between the Trump campaign and Russia... and how would you asses the Trump presidency?"
The Russian President replied:
"It is standard practice for diplomats to talk – what’s so strange about this? Why do you have this 'Russia spy hysteria'?"
Of course, as the left would exclaim, he would say that wouldn't he...