Mattis: Putin tried to meddle in the midterm elections

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"We are going to stand with the 41 nations, largest wartime coalition in history, who are still committed to this effort", Mattis said at the Reagan National Defense Forum on Saturday.

"We have got to be much stronger in drawing lines with Putin", he said, adding he believes Putin isn't a slow learner, but rather "a bully".

"There is no doubt the relationship has worsened", between the US and Russian Federation. A special counsel investigation into Russia's role in that election and whether Trump's campaign conspired with Moscow has cast a cloud over his presidency. Trump has said there was no collusion.

The U.S. intelligence community is reviewing data from the midterm elections for any evidence of foreign interference - with a report on the probe due to the administration later this month. US prosecutors in October charged a Russian national with playing a financial role in a Kremlin-backed plan to conduct "information warfare" against the United States, including attempts to influence the midterm election.

U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis revealed that the Russian government attempted to interfere in the U.S. midterm elections last month. Russian Federation seized Ukrainian ships. However, Mattis said that he didn't think the threat from Russian Federation to American elections had increased. And labeled him a "slow learner".

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Putin said that the result was "an extremely negative effect on the spirit of worldwide cooperation", discouraging business. Western leaders have vocally criticized Russian Federation and called for the release of the Ukrainian sailors.

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Mattis described the Russian leader as "someone we simply can not trust".

"He is not recognising that what he is doing is actually creating the animosity against his people".

CNN chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta said "this is probably the revelation of the day".

"It is regrettable that we can't succeed in holding a full-scale meeting, which is long due", Putin said, adding that issues of strategic stability would be of paramount importance. Trump abruptly canceled a planned meeting with Putin at the summit just two days before they were scheduled to sit down.

"Mr. Putin clearly comes tight".

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