Trump Says He Didn’t Raise Russian Bounties in Call with Vladimir Putin
President Donald Trump has said he didn’t mention Russian bounties on U.S. troops in Afghanistan during a phone call with Vladimir Putin last week. Trump spoke to the Russian president on Thursday but admitted he didn’t raise the issue.
Trump gave an interview to Axios on Tuesday and snippets of the conversation were revealed on Wednesday, ahead of its release. Jonathan Swan asked the President if he discussed Russia paying bounties to the Taliban for American soldiers.
NEW: President Trump tells @jonathanvswan on #AxiosOnHBO that he didn't raise the issue of alleged bounties on U.S. troops during his call with Vladimir Putin last week: "That was a phone call to discuss other things." pic.twitter.com/daISvMFUE1
— Axios (@axios) July 29, 2020
“I have never discussed it with him,” Trump said. “That was a phone call to discuss other things, and frankly that’s an issue that many people said was fake news.”
Trump has repeatedly claimed the intelligence on Russian bounties wasn’t credible and wasn’t included in his daily briefing. However, reports later suggested the information was in his briefing but the President didn’t read. During the interview he said ‘they like to say I don’t read, I read a lot.’
When Swan challenged Trump on the fact Russia was supplying weapons to the Taliban – something that is not a matter of dispute – he seemed unconcerned.
“Well we supplied weapons when they were fighting Russia too,” he said.
Watch the video above, via Twitter.