Putin: Russian state has never been involved in hacking

FILE _ In this Monday, Dec. 26, 2016 file photo Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks at a meeting in St.Petersburg, Russia. (AP Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky, File)

ST.PETERSBURG, Russia (AP) – President Vladimir Putin says the Russian state has never been involved in hacking.

Speaking at a meeting with senior editors of leading international news agencies Thursday, Putin said that some individual “patriotic” hackers could mount some attacks amid the current cold spell in Russia’s relations with the West.

But he categorically insisted that “we don’t engage in that at the state level.”

Putin also said that “no hackers can influence election campaigns in any country of Europe, Asia or America.”

U.S. intelligence agencies have accused Russia of hacking into Democratic Party emails, helping President Donald Trump’s election victory.

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