MOSCOW (Reuters) – The Kremlin said on Monday that Russian President Vladimir Putin had made the decision not to respond to new US sanctions last year independently and had not received the influence of the former US national security adviser. Michael Flynn
Sputnik / Mikhail Klimentyev / Kremlin via REUTERS
Flynn pleaded guilty on Friday to lying to the FBI about his contacts with Russia and agreed to cooperate with prosecutors to delve into the actions of President Donald Trump's inner circle before taking office.
U.S. Prosecutors said Flynn and Sergei Kislyak, then Russian ambbadador to the United States, discussed last December the economic sanctions that the Obama administration has just imposed on Moscow for allegedly interfering in the US presidential election, something that Moscow denies.
Obama at the time expelled 35 Russian diplomats and US authorities seized two Russian diplomatic complexes in the United States.
But Putin said he would wait to see how relations with the new Trump administration developed before responding. Russia just went ahead and took retaliatory measures this summer.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Putin had made the decision to resist the reprisals independently and did not know about Flynn's alleged request to Russia to refrain from an immediate response.
Flynn was not in a position to ask anything from Kislyak, the then Russian ambbadador to the USA. UU., Peskov said, describing the idea of "absurd."
"Of course, Putin made the decision, it was his decision," Peskov said in a conference call with reporters.
"It was not possible (the decision) to have been connected to any request or recommendation, the president makes his decisions in an absolutely independent manner."
Report of Andrew Osborn and Dmitry Solovyov; Christian Lowe's edition