The Kremlin has brushed off the most recent round of media reports suggesting that U.S. President Donald Trump may have acted in the interests of Russia, describing the claims as a “conspiracy.”
Trump said on Monday he never worked for Russia, his first direct denial after a New York Times report that the FBI in 2017 investigated whether he acted against U.S. interests. He also disputed a Washington Post report that he had concealed details about his meetings with Russian President Vladimir Putin and confiscated his interpreter's notes.
“This is a conspiracy that has no relation to reality,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told the Argumenty i Fakty tabloid in an interview published Tuesday.
Peskov also reiterated the argument that Trump is a victim of hostile forces in the United States. “America has found itself in a unique situation: there’s both a social and government divide,” Peskov said. “This results in difficult conditions which Trump has to work in.”
The Times reported Friday that the FBI opened the investigation after Trump's firing of FBI Director James Comey raised concerns that the president posed a threat to national security. On Saturday, the Post reported Trump took notes that his interpreter made during a 2017 meeting in Hamburg with Putin and told him not to divulge details to other administration officials.
Congressional Democrats raised the possibility of subpoenaing the translator.
Trump's relations with Russia and Putin have clouded his presidency from the beginning and he has long dismissed the federal investigation into whether his 2016 campaign worked with Russia to sway the election as a hoax and a "witch hunt.”
U.S. intelligence agencies have concluded Moscow led a propaganda and hacking campaign designed to tip the 2016 White House race to Trump. Russia has denied interfering.
Reuters contributed reporting to this article.