Speaking to CNN, anonymous sources suggested that Moscow had cut down its intelligence operations in Western countries over the past weeks during the FIFA World Cup and ahead of Monday's summit between Presidents Putin and Trump, but was planning to renew its "anti-Western operations" now that the events are over.
A similar pause in Russian activities was made ahead of the 2014 Sochi Olympic Games, the sources claimed.
The sources couldn't offer any specific details about the new operations, but said that they generally include "exploiting political turmoil and destabilizing governments in the West," according to CNN.
Social media users, many long used to the idea that CNN is a source of 'Fake News', didn't buy the new claims, questioning the authenticity of the unnamed sources, and publishing memes about alleged Russian meddling in US elections.
Well here we go with CNN'S "sources" again.— Jay Gaudinier (@JayGaudinier) July 18, 2018
Didn't know CNN has any real sources for news these days.— Sean Champ (@SeanChampVA) July 17, 2018
It’s always “sources”. They can make up anything they want and put “sources say”. Their dumbed down audience will eat it up. CNN is king of fake news.— Don Draper (@MadMenCrypto) July 17, 2018
Is your source your producer? Ya thought so.— LookAtTheDecoy (@DecoyLook) July 17, 2018
Others suggested the news agency was trying to make a mountain out of a molehill.
FAKE NEWS, all gov'ts including USA are ramping up operations aimed at other countries: allies, friend & foe alike. Yesteryear it was trenchcoat spying; in the 21st century it's the cyber world via internet; it is something we have to live with— DoctorD (@Dcitizen911) July 18, 2018
"Ramp up operations" meaning? You have specifics or are you just fear mongering? Are we talking Facebook ads or nuclear missiles hitting Florida?— Pauly Wall Street (@PaulyWallStreet) July 17, 2018
During Monday's summit in Helsinki, Russian President Vladimir Putin called the collusion claims "nonsense," and repeated that Russia "has never interfered and is not going to meddle in US internal affairs, including in the election process." President Trump, who appeared to agree with Putin and to reject claims of Russian meddling made by US intelligence agencies, faced a massive backlash for his remarks, including from his own party, prompting him to backtrack and say that Russia may have meddled, but that it "could be other people also."