Nikki Haley , the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations called Moscow’s meddling in the 2016 election “warfare” — wording that President Trump repeatedly has shied away from. Nikki Haley blasted Russia’s efforts to “sow chaos” in elections across the world during a conference hosted by the George W. Bush Institute.
“The Russians, God bless them, they’re saying, ‘Why are Americans anti-Russian? And why have we done the sanctions?’ Well, don’t interfere in our elections and we won’t be anti-Russian,” Haley said. “When a country can come and interfere in another country’s elections, that is warfare.”
Trump has never used such bold language when discussing Russia. The President has instead consistently questioned the U.S. intelligence community’s assesment that the Kremlin interfered in the election. US intelligence agencies have concluded that Russia used cyber-enabled means in an attempt to help President Donald Trump win the White House, an allegation the Kremlin has denied.
“We have to be so hard on this and we have to hold them accountable,” Haley said during a panel discussion with former Secretaries of State Madeleine Albright and Condoleezza Rice held by the George W. Bush Institute in New York last week.
“When a country can come interfere in another country’s elections that is warfare. It really is, because you’re making sure that the democracy shifts from what the people want,” she said. “This is their new weapon of choice and we have to get in front of it.”
Congressional committees and special counsel Robert Mueller are investigating alleged Russian interference in the election, including whether there was any collusion between Trump associates and Moscow. Trump has denied that there was any collusion between his campaign and associates and Russia.