Trump promises revelation on election hacking claims

Mr Trump, accompanied by his wife Melania for a New Year's Eve party in Florida on Saturday, cast further doubts on allegations that there was Russian interference in the US elections, and claimed that more information on the issue will be revealed "
Mr Trump, accompanied by his wife Melania for a New Year's Eve party in Florida on Saturday, cast further doubts on allegations that there was Russian interference in the US elections, and claimed that more information on the issue will be revealed "on Tuesday or Wednesday".PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

WEST PALM BEACH (Florida) • US President-elect Donald Trump, expressing lingering scepticism about intelligence assessments of Russian interference in the election, has said he knew "things that other people don't know" about the hacking, and that the information will be revealed "on Tuesday or Wednesday".

Speaking to reporters outside his Palm Beach club, Mar-a-Lago, Mr Trump cast his declarations of doubt as an effort to seek the truth.

"I just want them to be sure because it's a pretty serious charge," he said on Saturday evening, of the intelligence agencies.

"If you look at the weapons of mass destruction, that was a disaster and they were wrong," he added, referring to intelligence cited by the George W. Bush administration to support its march to war in 2003. "So I want them to be sure," the President-elect said. "I think it's unfair if they don't know."

He added: "And I know a lot about hacking. And hacking is a very hard thing to prove. So it could be somebody else. And I also know things that other people don't know, and so they cannot be sure of the situation."

NO COMPUTER IS SAFE

I don't care what they say, no computer is safe. You want something to really go without detection, write it out and have it sent by courier.

MR DONALD TRUMP, advising people to avoid computers when dealing with delicate material.

When asked what he knew that others did not, he demurred, saying only: "You'll find out on Tuesday or Wednesday."

Mr Trump, who does not use e-mail, also advised people to avoid computers when dealing with delicate material. "It's very important, if you have something really important, write it out and have it delivered by courier, the old-fashioned way because, I'll tell you what, no computer is safe," he said.

"I don't care what they say, no computer is safe. I have a boy who's 10 years old; he can do anything with a computer. You want something to really go without detection, write it out and have it sent by courier."

The comments on Saturday were a departure from a statement that Mr Trump issued through transition officials last week, in which he said it was time for people to "move on" from the hacking issue but that he would be briefed on the matter by intelligence officials early in the new year.

Last Thursday, President Barack Obama ordered a set of retaliatory measures against Russia over the election hacking. The United States expelled 35 Russian diplomats and shuttered two estates that it claimed had been used for intelligence-gathering.

Russian President Vladimir Putin declined to respond in kind to the measures.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 02, 2017, with the headline 'Trump promises revelation on election hacking claims'. Print Edition | Subscribe