Trump accepts Russia behind election hacking

  • 09/01/2017
President-elect Donald Trump may take action over Russia's cyber attacks during the US election (Getty)
President-elect Donald Trump may take action over Russia's cyber attacks during the US election (Getty)

US President-elect Donald Trump accepts the US intelligence community's conclusion that Russia engaged in cyber attacks aimed at disrupting the presidential election and may take actions in response, his incoming chief of staff has said.

Reince Priebus, the former Republican National Committee chairman, said Mr Trump understands that Moscow was behind the intrusions into the Democratic Party organisations.

"He accepts the fact that this particular case was entities in Russia so that's not the issue," Mr Priebus said on Fox News.

Mr Priebus's comments marked a major shift as Mr Trump has repeatedly dismissed claims that the Russians were trying to help him, arguing that those charges are the product of his political opponents trying to undermine his victory.

It was the first acknowledgement from a senior member of the president-elect's team that Mr Trump has accepted that Moscow was involved in the hacking and subsequent disclosure of Democratic emails during the 2016 presidential election.

Mr Priebus said Mr Trump plans to order the intelligence community to make recommendations as to what should be done. Depending on those recommendations, "actions may be taken," he said.

If actions are taken they will be music to Senator Lindsay Graham's ears.

Senator Graham earlier made calls for Mr Trump to punish Russia for the online breaches.

In a couple weeks, Donald Trump will be the defender of the free world and democracy," Mr Graham said.

"You should let everybody know in America, Republicans and Democrats, that you're going to make Russia pay a price for trying to interfere."

AAP