Russia's ruling party denies USAID funding



Russia`s ruling party denies USAID funding Moscow: Russia's ruling party lashed out Friday at allegations by Washington that it had taken advantage "over the years" of programmes run by the USAID mission closed down by Moscow earlier this week.

"United Russia has always carefully adhered to the requirements of Russian law on the financing of political parties," leading party official Alexei Chesnakov said. "This statement appears to be an unfounded and emotional reaction."

Russia said Tuesday that USAID, which funds pro-democracy and human rights groups that have irked the Kremlin, would have to close its offices in the country by Oct 1.

President Vladimir Putin, who headed United Russia until late last year, said Thursday that the mission had been meddling in the country's internal affairs.

But US State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland told journalists in Washington Thursday that "United Russia has participated in some of the International Republican Institute and National Democratic Institute's programs over the years".

IANS