Vladimir Putin Blames Hillary Clinton for Election Protests in Russia

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has blamed recent protests to hit his country on U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

In a television appearance, Putin stated: “They [protesters] heard this signal and with the support of the U.S. State Department began their active work.”

Protesters took to the street after elections held last week, with Putin’s regime being accused of fixing the election. The government came down hard on protesters, but people have not stopped gathering. Even more gatherings are planned for this weekend.

Clinton, in talks with the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, stated that the U.S. had “serious concerns about the conduct of the election.”

She continued: “The Russian people, like people everywhere, deserve the right to have their voices heard and votes counted.”

Putin, meanwhile, threatened a more intense response to protesters: “We need to think about strengthening the law and holding responsible those who carry out the task of a foreign government to influence our internal political process.”

He added: “It is unacceptable when foreign money is pumped into election processes.”

The U.S. and European Union gave funds to an election-monitoring group.

Clinton responded to Putin’s accusations at a meeting in Brussels, saying that her concerns and comments were “well-founded.”

“I think it’s important that we value our relations with Russia. We have invested a great deal of effort on working together…and we have made progress.”

While protesters feel that the election was fixed, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev stated the election results were “a reflection of democracy. If people want to have their say on the elections, this is fine.”

The Russian government, though, has acted with force toward the people. According to reports, over 50,000 police have already been assigned to Moscow to control the crowds, with estimates of over 1,000 arrests.

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