In an interview with NBC, Putin denied USA charges that he was behind the interference in the elections which resulted in Donald Trump becoming President. "Maybe they're Ukrainians, Tatars, Jews - just with a Russian citizenship".
"The US.refuses to work like this and instead throws 13 Russians to the media", Putin said, going on to list the possible ethnicity that would make the suspects "not even Russian". "I don't care. I couldn't care less".
Mueller is investigating whether the Trump campaign colluded with the Kremlin.
Asked if he thinks that the U.S. is regularly meddling in Russian affairs, Putin answered: "always".
A source familiar with the matter did not contest the characterization, but said the Obama administration "timed its response so as to not provoke the Russians into materially affecting the outcome of the election".
"But the US refuses to work like this and instead throws 13 Russians to the media", he said, going on to list the possible ethnicities that would make the suspects "not even Russian". Putin asked in the often-combative interview with NBC television.
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"We in Russia can not prosecute anyone as long as they have not violated Russian law", he said. Maybe they have dual citizenship. "You made a decision, at the level of parliament, at the level of Congress and put Russian Federation on your list of enemies", he said.
"Could anyone really believe that Russian Federation, thousands of miles away, influenced the outcome of the election?" "At least send us a piece of paper". "And we'll take a look at it".
Kelly listed some of the accusations of Russian interference made by Mueller's office and other U.S. officials, including the spreading of false information online.
In the interview, Putin went on to say that Russian Federation had neither the tools nor the will to meddle in elections.
Asked why not, he said: "I have other ways of expressing my point of view or implementing a decision".
"In Illinois, investigators found evidence that cyber intruders tried to delete or alter voter data", Bloomberg said. Kelly noted that Putin made the remark about not having the tools to disrupt the US election shortly after he announced that Russian Federation had developed major new nuclear weapons.