The Kremlin said on Tuesday it didn't know where U.S. President Donald Trump had got the idea Moscow had removed most of its military specialists from Venezuela, who it said continued to work there.
Trump tweeted on Monday that Russia had told the United States it had removed "most of their people" from Venezuela, where Moscow has maintained close military and economic ties with socialist President Nicolas Maduro.
His statement caused a stir because, if true, it would mark a significant setback for Maduro, whom Washington is keen to dislodge and whom the Kremlin has steadfastly stood by.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, however, told reporters that Moscow had not been in touch with Trump on the subject. He said Trump had apparently got his information from newspaper reports, which Russian officials have already denied, or from somewhere else.
"By all appearances, it's a circumstantial reference to newspaper sources of information, because there was no official message about this from the Russian side and there couldn't be one," Peskov said of Trump's statement.