Russian Federation dismisses indictment as attempt to "spoil" Trump-Putin meeting

Mueller departs after briefing members of the U.S. Senate on his investigation into potential collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign on Capitol Hill in Washington DC

Twelve Russian spies have been charged with running a sweeping hacking campaign to damage Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton in the 2016 US presidential election - with the indictment landing three days before Donald Trump is set to meet Vladimir Putin.

Rod Rosenstein, the deputy attorney general, on Friday announced new charges stemming from the ongoing Department of Justice investigation led by Muller, into Russian interference during the 2016 presidential election.

The indictment accuses members of Russia's military intelligence agency known as the GRU of carrying out "large-scale cyber operations" to steal Democratic Party documents and emails.

Second, Friday's move is typical in that Mueller's indictments tend to always seem a bit surprising in their breadth, indicating that the investigation is a little broader, a little farther along, and a little more wide-ranging than many observers think. The 20 are four former Trump campaign and White House aides, three who have pleaded guilty to different crimes and agreed to cooperate, and 13 Russians accused of participating in a hidden but powerful social media campaign to sway U.S. public opinion in the election.

"President Trump should cancel his meeting with Vladimir Putin until Russian Federation takes demonstrable and transparent steps to prove that they won't interfere in future elections", he said.

The indictment was announced at nearly exactly the moment that Trump rolled into the quadrangle of Windsor Castle to meet the awaiting Queen Elizabeth II in the symbolic highpoint of his visit to Britain.

After the indictments were announced, top Senate Democrat Chuck Schumer called on Mr Trump to cancel his meeting with Mr Putin until Russian Federation takes steps to prove it will not interfere in future elections.

Despite the most recent indictment, the Trump-Putin meeting is "still on", White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said. "There is no debate that the Russians meddled in the election". "There is no allegation in the indictment that the Americans knew they were communicating with Russian intelligence officers", Rosenstein said.

A dozen Russian intelligence officers have been indicted for allegedly trying to interfere with 2016 election. According to pages 15 and 16 of today's federal indictment, a candidate for Congress sought out Guccifer 2.0 in order to obtain stolen documents on his/her opponent.

Hours before the Justice Department announcement, Trump complained anew that the special counsel's investigation is complicating his efforts to forge a better working relationship with Russian Federation. And they say that on the same day Trump said in a speech, "Russia, if you're listening, I hope you're able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing", Russian hackers tried for the first time to break into email accounts used by Clinton's personal office. "This has gone from being a matter of curiosity and a matter of politics to being a national security issue", the Clinton campaign said in a statement after Trump's remarks. "But it makes it very hard to do something with Russian Federation".

After the indictments were announced, top Senate Democrat Chuck Schumer called on Trump to cancel his meeting with Putin until Russian Federation takes steps to prove it won't interfere in future elections.

"We have been extremely tough on Russia", Trump said.

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