Russia Denies Having Compromising Material on Donald Trump
Russia has denied having any compromising material on President-elect Donald J. Trump, saying on Wednesday that an uncorroborated report containing salacious allegations about him was “pulp fiction” intended to hurt Russian-American relations.
“The Kremlin has no compromising dossier on Mr. Trump, such information is not consistent with reality and is nothing but an absolute fantasy,” Dmitri. S. Peskov, the Kremlin’s spokesman, said at a regular news briefing.
On Tuesday, Mr. Trump said on Twitter that an uncorroborated report about salacious information, supposedly collected by the Russian authorities with the intention of being able to blackmail him in the future, amounted to “FAKE NEWS — A TOTAL POLITICAL WITCH HUNT!”
“There are people who foment this hysteria, who move heaven and earth to keep up this ‘witch hunt,’ ”;
“By the way, this is how Mr. Trump characterized this fabrication.” Mr. Peskov said.
The report, comprising a series of memos, describes sex videos involving Mr. Trump and prostitutes at a Moscow hotel in 2013. The videos were supposedly recorded as “kompromat,” a Russian word used to describe compromising material that can be used to gain leverage.
The report was compiled mainly by a retired British intelligence operative who received information from Russian informants and others. It was prepared for a Washington political and corporate research firm, and was paid for by Mr. Trump’s political rivals.
In Moscow, Russian officials and lawmakers described these and other allegations linking Russia to the president-elect as part of a campaign to undermine Mr. Trump’s stated goal of improving ties with that country.
“President Obama’s administration does whatever is possible to impede Mr. Trump’s activities during his tenure as president,” said Sergei Zheleznyak, a member of the Russian Parliament.
Over the last week, the term “witch hunt” has also been used by other Russian officials to describe allegations against them. On Monday, Mr. Peskov described an American intelligence report that accused the Kremlin of meddling with the 2016 presidential race as an “amateurish” work compiled as part of a “witch hunt” against Russia.
Russian-American relations have been plagued by a series of scandals despite efforts in the late 2000s by President Obama and the Russian president at the time, Dmitri A. Medvedev, to reset them. The countries have accused each other of trying to influence their domestic politics and they have imposed sanctions against each other.