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Investigators explore if Russia colluded with pro-Trump sites during US election

  • Published at 12:19 am July 6th, 2017
Investigators explore if Russia colluded with pro-Trump sites during US election
The spread of Russian-made fake news stories aimed at discrediting Hillary Clinton on social media is emerging as an important line of inquiry in multiple investigations into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Moscow, The Guardian reports. Investigators are looking into whether Trump supporters and far-right websites coordinated with Moscow over the release of fake news, including stories implicating Clinton in murder or paedophilia, or paid to boost those stories on Facebook. The head of the Trump digital camp, Brad Parscale, has reportedly been summoned to appear before the House intelligence committee looking into Moscow’s interference in the 2016 US election. Mark Warner, the top Democrat on the Senate intelligence committee carrying out a parallel inquiry, has said that at least 1,000 “paid internet trolls working out of a facility in Russia” were pumping anti-Clinton fake news into social media sites during the campaign. Warner said there was evidence that this campaign appeared to be focused on key voters in swing states, raising the question over whether there was coordination with US political operatives in directing the flow of bogus stories. The role of Russian generated fake news is a separate strand which has gained less attention up to now, but the part it played in depressing the Clinton vote in key states like Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania in the critical last days of the 2016 campaign could have helped change the course of recent American history.