Putin dismisses Trump information-sharing scandal as 'schizophrenia'

Putin dismisses Trump information-sharing scandal as 'schizophrenia'

Vladimir Putin has dismissed the ongoing scandal around President Donald Trump sharing classified intelligence with Russian officials as "political schizophrenia."

Mr Trump came under fire earlier this week after it was revealed that he shared the sensitive intelligence with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Russian ambassador to the US Sergei Kislyak.

Speaking at a joint news conference with the visiting Italian prime minister on Wednesday, the Russian president said he had "no other explanation" as to why President Trump came under attack other than "political schizophrenia".

Mr Putin even suggested that Russia share the records of last week's talks between Mr Trump and Mr Lavrov with the US Congress, if the White House approved.

President Putin joked that that he would reprimand Mr Lavrov because "he hasn't shared those secrets with us".

President Putin also lashed out at US politicians whipping up what he described as "anti-Russian sentiment" for being either "stupid" or "dangerous".

Mr Putin said that Moscow initially found debates about Russia's meddling in US politics "funny", but said Moscow is now "concerned because it is hard to imagine what the people who produce such nonsense can come up with next".

President Putin dismissed the US politicians, whom he did not identify, as either being "stupid" or "dangerous and unscrupulous", who are wittingly "causing the damage to their own country".

Asked what he thinks of the Trump presidency, Mr Putin said it is up to the American people to judge but his performance can only be rated "only when he's allowed to work at full capacity", implying that someone is hampering President Trump's efforts.

- AP

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