Putin Says He Needs More Clarity on Winner of U.S. Presidential Vote

MOSCOW—Russian President Vladimir Putin said Sunday he wouldn’t congratulate the winner of the U.S. election until it was clear who the victor was and criticized what he called problems in the electoral system, echoing allegations from President Trump that the vote was flawed.

The Kremlin leader’s comments, his first since the election, push a narrative aired on Russian state media since the vote shedding doubt on the legitimacy of the vote and presenting the U.S. as a hotbed of turmoil.

Mr. Trump has launched a number of legal challenges since the election and has complained that his observers weren’t allowed to be close enough to those counting to be effective. No evidence of widespread fraud in the election has emerged.

Federal officials have said the election was conducted without interference and was secure from tampering or rigging.

Russia was accused of meddling in the 2016 election in favor of Mr. Trump. In the run-up to this year’s vote, Russian television devoted considerable airtime to the U.S. elections, painting for domestic audiences a much more favorable picture of Mr. Trump than President-elect Joe Biden, who has called Russia the U.S.’s biggest security threat.

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