President Barack Obama said Friday he had confronted Vladimir Putin in person over allegations of Russian hacking when they met ahead of the US election, telling him to "cut it out."
After being alerted over the summer to Russian cyber-attacks on the Democratic Party, Obama told a year-end news conference his chief concern was to ensure the hacking did not escalate and hamper the vote counting last month.
Obama says US will retaliate against Russian hacking
Just five weeks before he leaves the White House, the outgoing president has vowed to retaliate against Moscow over the cyber-meddling, which US intelligence says was designed to help Republican Donald Trump defeat Democrat Hillary Clinton, a Putin critic.
Obama said there also was "some evidence" of China curbing cyber espionage in response to US warnings.
Putin gave clear response to US hacking allegations
"I had to have the same conversation with President Xi (Jinping) and what we've seen is some evidence that they have reduced but not completely eliminated these activities," the US leader said.
Obama's traditional year-end press conference -- held as tensions soar with Russia -- was expected to be closely watched by his elected successor Trump, who has pledged to foster closer ties with the Kremlin.
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