Putin gave clear response to U.S. hacking allegations: TASS cites Kremlin

Russia's President Vladimir Putin attends a summit meeting with Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Nagato, Yamaguchi prefecture, Japan, December 15, 2016. REUTERS/Toru Hanai

TOKYO (Reuters) - The Kremlin said on Friday that President Vladimir Putin had given President Barack Obama “a really clear response” to U.S. allegations that Moscow had interfered in the U.S. presidential election by hacking Democratic Party organizations.

Russia’s TASS news agency cited Kremlin aide Yuri Ushakov as telling reporters in Tokyo that Putin had explained Russia’s stance on the issue to Obama on the sidelines of the G20 summit in September.

“There was a tete-a-tete conversation and different themes were discussed,” Ushakov was cited as saying. “This theme was touched upon. A really clear reply was given by our side which perhaps did not fit with what Obama was trying to explain to us.”

Three U.S. officials said on Thursday that Putin had supervised his intelligence agencies’ hacking of the U.S. presidential election and turned it from a general attempt to discredit American democracy to an effort to help Donald Trump.

Reporting by Maria Kiselyova; Writing by Andrew Osborn; Editing by Christian Lowe