Published On: Wed, Feb 7th, 2018

Tillerson: Russia already looking to interfere in 2018 midterms

Washington: US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has said that Russia is already trying to meddle in this year’s midterm elections and Washington is ill-prepared to prevent their interference as it was in the 2016 general election.

it’s important for the US to confront Russia instead of turning a blind eye

“If it’s their intention to interfere, they are going to find ways to do that. We can take steps… but this is something that, once they decide they are going to do it, it’s very difficult to pre-empt it,” Tillerson told Fox News in an interview.

“Russia is already attempting to interfere in the US in 2018 ahead of congressional midterm elections as it did in the 2016 general election,” he said.

Tillerson said “it’s important for the US to confront Russia instead of turning a blind eye”.

CIA Director Mike Pompeo made a similar assessment last month, saying he had “every expectation” Russia will attempt to influence this year’s midterms.

Pompeo said the US will “push back in a way that is sufficiently robust that the impact they have on our election won’t be great”.

The US intelligence community concluded in a report released in 2017 that Russia conducted a campaign aimed at helping President Donald Trump win the 2016 presidential election.

The Trump administration said last week that it would not implement new sanctions on Russia, arguing that the threat of sanctions was already “serving as a deterrent”.

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