Russia’s Ambassador to the United Nations has turned down John McCain’s request for the financial support of his pre-election campaign. “Neither Russian officials, nor the Russian Ambassador to the UN, nor the Russian government can fund the political activity in foreign countries,” the note from the office of the Russian Ambassador to the UN, Vitaly Churkin said Tuesday.
Russia’s Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the UN released a statement Monday, in which it was said that the office had received a letter from McCain with a request to render financial assistance to his campaign.
Ruslan Bakhtin, the press secretary of the mission, said that the letter, signed by McCain was dated from September 29. The letter arrived in the mission on October 16, and was addressed to Russia’s Ambassador to the UN Vitali Churkin. The letter came complete with a motto – “Do not let Democrats rule Washington,” RIA Novosti reports.
There was a questionnaire enclosed in the letter, which was supposed to be filled out by the person, who would decide to provide the requested support to McCain’s campaign. The questionnaire was then supposed to be sent back with a bank check or a permission to debit the funds from a credit card before October 24. McCain expressed his gratitude in advance for the support of the Republican Party and hoped to receive a prompt positive response – a financial contribution that could vary from $5,000 to $35,000.
“It is evident that the letter was a mistake. It happens,” Bakhtin said. “The Russian authorities do not fund political campaigns or political activities outside Russia,” he added.
The press service of McCain’s election headquarters also acknowledged that the letter arrived to Russia’s Permanent Mission to the UN as a result of a computer mistake. “"It sounds like they have had a laugh at our expense. We obviously don't solicit campaign contributions from people who aren't able to contribute," campaign spokesman Brian Rogers said.
John McCain is known for his anti-Russian remarks. He repeatedly criticized the Russian administration for its policies and urged world leaders to exclude Russia from the Group of Eight.
To crown it all, the candidates running for US presidency are not allowed to accept financial help from foreign countries.
The choice of the city of Helsinki is not incidental as the capital of Finland had hosted US-Soviet negotiations on the limitation of nuclear stockpiles in 1969