02:49 GMT07 July 2020
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    Russian President Vladimir Putin said that the United States supported terrorists in Russia's Chechnya Republic both financially and via political means, when Russian troops have been engaged in counterterrorism operation in the region.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The United States supported terrorists in Russia's Chechnya Republic both financially and via political means, when Russian troops have been engaged in counterterrorism operation in the region, Russian President Vladimir Putin said in an interview with director Oliver Stone.

    "If to speak about a political support, there is no need in proving evidence. It has been done publicly, openly. And if to speak about urgent financial support — we have such evidence and furthermore have already provided it to our US colleagues," Putin said in the interview for the documentary series, the first part of which was aired by the US TV channel Showtime late on Monday.

    The president added that he had informed his then-US counterpart George Bush about this evidence and named several representatives of US security services that had provided support to Chechen militants.

    "The response of the US president was very appropriate… He said: 'I will deal with it,'" Putin added.

    The Russian leader said that Moscow had later received a response from the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) on the issue.

    "Indeed, we have later received via our partner links a letter from the US CIA, which said that our colleagues consider that they have a right to maintain relations with all the representatives of the opposition and would continue to do so. It was obvious that the speech was not only about opposition groups, but about terrorist groups and organizations. But at the same time they had been presented as just opposition," Putin added.

    "The cold war is in the past, we have clear, transparent relations with the whole world, with Europe, with the United States, and of course we were counting on their support and instead we saw US security services supporting terrorists. And I will tell you something which I believe is important, we have a strong opinion that our US partners support Russia in words, speak of their readiness to cooperate, including in righting terrorism, while in reality they use these terrorists to destabilize the intra-political situation in Russia," Putin said.

    Following the dissolution of the Soviet Union, a number of terrorist and separatist groups emerged in Russia's Chechen Republic. In order to restore peace and order in the region, Moscow launched a counterterrorism operation there. The terrorist groups have been supported by a number of foreign jihadists.

    Vladimir Putin also said that the United States has contributed to creation of the al-Qaeda terrorist organization and should understand that it is responsible for this situation.

    "Al-Qaeda is not the result of our activities. This is the result of activities of our US friends. This all started in the times of the Soviet war in Afghanistan. When the US security services supported different movements of Islamic fundamentalism in their struggle against the Soviet troops in Afghanistan. The US side has nurtured both al-Qaeda and [infamous terrorist Osama] bin Laden," Putin said in a part of the interview.

    The Russian leader noted that the situation had ran out of Washington's control.

    "It always happens like this. Our US partners should have been aware of it. It is their fault," Putin said.

    Within the framework of the so-called Cold War the US agencies, such as CIA, provided assistance to a number of militant groups fighting against the Soviet Union during Moscow's campaign in Afghanistan. Al-Qaeda, which is responsible for a number of notorious terrorist attacks, including 9/11, was one of the radical Islamic movements struggling against the Soviet Union in the 1980s.


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