Russian president Vladimir Putin accused far-left billionaire George Soros of meddling in international affairs during a joint press conference Monday with President Donald Trump in Helsinki, Finland.
A partial transcript is as follows:
REPORTER: Thank you. Question for each president. President Trump, you first. Just now, President Putin denied having anything to do with the election interference in 2016. Every U.S. intelligence agency has concluded that Russia did. What, who, my first question for you, sir, is who do you believe? My second question is, would you now, with the whole world watching, tells President Putin that you denounce what happened in 2016 and would you warn him to never do it again.
TRUMP: So, let me just say that we have two thoughts. You have groups that are wondering why the FBI never took the server. Why haven’t they taken the server? Why was the FBI told to leave the office of the Democratic National Committee? I’ve been wondering that. I’ve been asking that for months and months. I’ve been tweeting it out and calling it out on social media. Where is the server? I want to know where is the server and what is the server saying? With that being said, all I can do is ask the question. My people came to me, Dan Coats came to me and some others, they said they think it’s Russia. I have President Putin, he just said it’s not Russia. I will say this, I don’t know see any reason why it would be, but I really do want to see the server. I have confidence in both parties. I really believe this will probably go on for a while. I don’t think it can go on without finding out what happened to the server.
PUTIN: I’d like to add something to this. After all, I was an intelligence officer myself and I do know how dossiers are made up. That’s the first thing. Now, the second thing. I believe that Russia is a democratic state and I hope you’re not denying this right to your own country. Do you believe the United States if a democracy? And if so, if it is a democratic state, then the final conclusion in this find of a dispute can only be delivered by trial, by the court. Not by the executive, by the law enforcement. For instance, the Concord company is being accused of interference but this company does not institute the Russia state, does not represent the Russia state, and I brought several examples before. You have a lot of individuals in the United States — take George Soros, for instance, with multi-billion capitals — but it doesn’t make his position, his posture, the posture of the United States. No, it does not.