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White House National Security Adviser John Bolton told his Russian counterpart that his country’s interference in the 2016 presidential election didn’t affect the outcome but has nonetheless damaged relations with the U.S.

“The point I made to Russian colleagues today was that I didn’t think, whatever they had done in terms of meddling in the 2016 election, that they had any effect on it,” Bolton told Echo Moskvy, according to a transcript provided by the U.S. Embassy. “But what they have had an effect in the United States is to sow enormous distrust of Russia, and it’s a major obstacle to achieving agreement on issues where our national interest may converge.”

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