‘AP’s malicious lie’: Russian tycoon denies dealing with Trump’s ex-aide to ‘benefit Putin’

Tuesday, March 28, 2017
By Paul Martin

28 Mar, 2017

Oleg Deripaska has slammed an AP report claiming he had dealings with former Donald Trump aide Paul Manafort in order to “benefit the Putin government.” The Russian tycoon says he’s ready to take part in “any hearing” in the US Congress on the subject.

In a statement published in the Wall Street Journal, Deripaska, the president one of the largest aluminum companies in the world, RUSAL, said: “In recent days I have been the subject of a massive and misleading campaign generated by an ‘AP exclusive’, which alleged my involvement in a plan ‘to greatly benefit the Putin government.’”

The AP report claims that Paul Manafort, the former national chairman of Trump’s presidential campaign, “secretly worked for Russian billionaire” Deripaska.

AP assumed that Manafort had initiated the strategy back in 2005 to “influence politics, business dealings and news coverage inside the United States, Europe and former Soviet republics to benefit President Vladimir Putin’s government.” The AP exclusive also claimed that Deripaska had signed a $10 million annual contract with Manafort.

“I want to resolutely deny this malicious assertion and lie. I have never made any commitments or contacts with the obligation or purpose to covertly promote or advance ‘Putin’s government’ interests anywhere in the world,” Deripaska said.

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