Russian think tank helped craft election meddling plan: report
BYChristopher Brennan
Updated: Wednesday, April 19, 2017, 9:23 PM
A think tank that advises Vladimir Putin reportedly drew up plans to influence the U.S. election.

The alleged Kremlin plan to impact 2016 U.S. election ran through a think tank loyal to Vladimir Putin, according to American officials.

U.S. intelligence has acquired documents from the Russian Institute for Strategic Studies written since last June that show the formulation behind the plot, unidentified sources told Reuters Wednesday.

Two of the reported documents include a strategy paper written in the Moscow-based institute last June and a paper from October saying pro-Russian social media assets and news outlets should focus on voter fraud rather than promoting Trump given the small likelihood of him winning.

Putin has repeatedly denied his government had any hand in trying to determine the U.S. election.

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The Russian Institute for Strategic Studies, a government-backed group that provides recommendations to Putin and Russian lawmakers, also denied the Reuters report.

“The number of slanderous remarks against Russia has been growing recently but those making such remarks wrongly perceive the world,” it told news agency TASS.

The group said those wondering about the unexpected election result should “forward such questions to Hillary Clinton’s election team.

U.S. intelligence has reportedly acquired documents from the Russian Institute for Strategic Studies.


It was not immediately clear how the documents were obtained by U.S. officials from the RISS.

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FBI Director James Comey has confirmed that his agency has been investigating meddling in the election process since last summer, including potential links between the Trump campaign and the Russian government.

Trump and his administration have criticized any reporting on connections between his team and Kremlin election interference as “fake news.”

A joint report from U.S. intelligence agencies said the Kremlin was aiming at delegitimizing the democratic process through both supporting a hack of the Democratic National Committee and pushing certain lines through state-sponsored outlets such as broadcaster RT.

The documents obtained by U.S. intelligence from the RISS did not mention the DNC hacking, according to the officials who spoke to Reuters.

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