Dont look at India-China ties from a third country perspective: Modi

Putin on Friday also echoed a popular talking point of Trump's, that investigations into ties with Russian Federation is a fake story put forth by Democrats bitter they lost the election.

He described the focus on Kislyak's contacts as "catastrophic nonsense".

"Now we can dump it all on him and American imperialism", Putin said. "But we know what such sentiments lead to - it doesn't end in anything good", he said.

According to the Russian president, politicians backing Hillary Clinton miscalculated the mood during the U.S. campaign.

"They made a mistake and they don't want to recognize this mistake right now".

He added that IP addresses allegedly belonging to Russian hackers easily could have been rigged and couldn't stand as evidence.

"The economy has entered a new phase of expansion", Putin said.

He blamed the Democrats for the failure to acknowledge their mistakes in the campaign, and "taking internal USA political squabbles into the global arena".

Kushner then held a secret meeting with Sergei Gorkov, head of Russia's Kremlin-connected development bank, a meeting the White House says was one of many diplomatic encounters Kushner, now a presidential adviser, held in the weeks before Trump's inauguration.

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"It's his job, he gets paid for this", Putin said about Kislyak's meetings with Trump's team.

The Russian leader said Mr. Snowden had the right to act in the way he did however, saying he agreed that USA surveillance had become too intrusive, while praising his own country's intelligence services for operating within the law.

"What else is the ambassador supposed to do?"

The former KGB officer also took aim at a favorite Russian target, NATO, asking why the alliance needed such robust defense spending. "He must meet, discuss current affairs, negotiate".

"I ask you on behalf of Russian Federation, and I appeal to the American side: Help the newly elected president, the head of the United States administration", he said.

Asked about President Trump's decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris climate agreement, Putin stopped short of condemning Trump.

His lawyer said in January that Mr. Snowden had the right to remain in Russia until 2020 and to apply for Russian citizenship in 2018.

Trump said, according to the Paris Climate deal terms, China will be allowed many coal plants, and India will be allowed to double its coal production by 2020, but not the US. He said there's still time to reach a new deal but not without the USA, so the global community should "create the conditions for joint work".

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