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Saturday, January 07, 2017

Thursday December 8th 2011 Vladimir Putin accuses Hillary Clinton of encouraging Russian protests | World news | The Guardian

"Vladimir Putin has accused Hillary Clinton, the US secretary of state, of fomenting an increasingly vociferous opposition movement in Russia, threatening to derail the two countries' fragile resetting of relations.

The accusation builds on months of Russian statements and media coverage blaming popular uprisings around the Arab world on western scheming. It comes as Washington and Moscow tussle over a host of disagreements, from missile defence to Syria.

Speaking to supporters on Thursday, Putin accused Clinton of giving "the signal" to opposition leaders, who are expected to gather with tens of thousands of supporters for a protest on Saturday. He rejected Clinton's repeated criticism of a parliamentary vote last weekend that gave Putin's United Russia party nearly 50% of the vote amid widespread reports of fraud.

"[Opposition leaders] heard the signal and with the support of the US state department began active work," Putin said during a meeting of the All-Russia People's Front, a new political movement set up to support his presidential candidacy in a 4 March election.

"We are all grownups here. We all understand the organisers are acting according to a well-known scenario and in their own mercenary political interests," he said.

Clinton raised the issue of Russia's elections again on Thursday during a visit to Brussels. "Human rights is part of who we are," she said, after Putin's comments emerged. "And we expressed concerns that we thought were well founded about the conduct of the elections.

"We are supportive of the rights and aspirations of the Russian people to be able to make progress and realise a better future for themselves."

Vladimir Putin accuses Hillary Clinton of encouraging Russian protests | World news | The Guardian

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