Envoy: Russian intel sharing good enough

2014-01-26 22:04
Torch bearer Anna Bader during the Olympic torch relay in Novocherkassk, about 1 000km south of Moscow. (AP)

Torch bearer Anna Bader during the Olympic torch relay in Novocherkassk, about 1 000km south of Moscow. (AP)

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Washington - Russia's intelligence sharing with United States ahead of the Sochi Olympics has been "good enough", Moscow's ambassador to Washington said on Sunday, rebutting mounting US concern about the threat of attacks.

US officials and lawmakers have expressed frustration in recent days over Russia's reluctance to share information on potential threats to the Winter Games, which run from 7 February to 23 February.

But Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak responded: "It's good enough. And you need to remember, it's Olympic games that are being held in Russia. And we have pretty solid capabilities to deal with it on our own.

"We certainly rely on a lot of cooperation with the others, including the United States," he added in an interview on CNN.

A senior US official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told AFP this week that Russia "has not been forthcoming in sharing specific threat information".

US diplomats also have expressed frustration over the lack of cooperation, stressing they held Moscow responsible for security of the athletes and spectators.

But Kislyak said he was comfortable with the quality of cooperation, and said US officials were too.

"I don't see any tension. I didn't feel any tension," he said.

US offers of help in ensuring security at the Games came up in a telephone conversation on Tuesday between President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

US Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel, speaking at a news conference, said Russia had not taken up the offer, however.

Meanwhile, the Pentagon announced it is deploying two warships to the Black Sea as a "precaution" in case of a terror attack.

On Friday, the United States warned US athletes to avoid wearing their uniforms or Team USA logos outside Olympic venues as a precaution.

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Read more on:    sochi olympics  |  chuck hagel  |  barack obama  |  vladimir putin  |  russia  |  usa  |  sochi 2014

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