In an interview broadcast Sunday, President Trump told the network’s Bill O’Reilly that he respected Putin.
“He’s a killer, though,” O’Reilly interjected. “Putin’s a killer.”
In the 16 years that Putin has been either president or prime minister, several Russian opposition leaders, human rights activists, journalists and whistle-blowers were assassinated or died under suspicious circumstances.
The Kremlin, which has always denied involvement in any of those deaths, lashed out at the network. “We think that such words from a correspondent of the Fox News network are unacceptable, insulting,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitri Peskov told journalists in a conference call. “And we would, honestly, prefer to receive apologies.”
In the interview, Trump also appeared to defend Putin.
“There are a lot of killers,” he said in response to O’Reilly’s accusation. “We’ve got a lot of killers. What, you think our country’s so innocent? You think our country’s so innocent?”
“I don’t know of any government leaders that are killers,” the news host said.
“Well, take a look at what we’ve done too. We’ve made a lot of mistakes,” Trump said. “... A lot of killers around, believe me.”
Trump cited the U.S. invasion of Iraq. He could have also been referring to drone strikes that have killed civilians or assassinations sponsored by the CIA.
Still, Andrew Kuchins, a senior fellow at Georgetown University and an expert on Russia, called Trump’s remarks "inappropriate."Read More...
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