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Photo: Brendan Smailowski/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump denied there is any proof that Russia poisoned opposition leader Alexei Navalny at a White House press conference on Friday, saying he would be "very angry if that is the case."

Why it matters: Trump, in his first public comments since Nalvany fell ill during a flight from Siberia to Moscow, said: "I don't know exactly what happened." The German government announced this week that the poisoning was conducted with Novichok, a chemical typically associated with Russian security services.

What Trump's saying: "So, I don't know exactly what happened. I think that it is tragic. It is terrible. It should not happen. We have not had any proof yet, but we will take a look. ... I would be very angry if that is the case."

Instead of backing the German government's analysis of Nalvany's illness, Trump spoke of his relationship with other countries around the world and noted ongoing negotiations with Russia on a non-proliferation agreement.

  • "I get along with almost all countries," Trump said. "I get along with North Korea ... If Hillary got elected, we would be in a war right now with North Korea. ... We have a great peace deal in the Middle East with UAE and Israel."

The president questioned why reporters frequently ask him about Russia and requested more questions on China.

  • "It is interesting that everybody is always mentioning Russia," Trump said. "I don't mind you mentioning them, but China at this point is probably a nation that you should be talking about much more so than Russia, because the things that China is doing are far worse."

Go deeper

Oct 23, 2020 - World

Israel drops opposition to F-35 deal between U.S. and UAE

Netanyahu and Trump before the signing of the Abraham Accords. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Israeli defense minister Benny Gantz announced in a joint statement on Friday that Israel will not object to the sale of F-35 fighter jets by the U.S. to the United Arab Emirates.

Why it matters: The Trump administration was planning to notify Congress in the next few days about the upcoming deal, which has been a top priority for the UAE, Israeli officials said. The statement will likely convince Congress not to intervene against the deal over concerns for the Israel’s security.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Ipsos poll: COVID trick-or-treat — Study: Trump campaign rallies likely led to over 700 COVID-related deaths.
  2. World: Boris Johnson announces month-long COVID-19 lockdown in England — Greece tightens coronavirus restrictions as Europe cases spike — Austria reimposes coronavirus lockdowns amid surge of infections.
  3. Economy: Conference Board predicts economy won’t fully recover until late 2021.
  4. Technology: Fully at-home rapid COVID test to move forward.
  5. States: New York rolls out new testing requirements for visitors.
4 hours ago - Health

Boris Johnson announces month-long COVID-19 lockdown in England

Prime Minsiter Boris Johnson. Photo: NurPhoto / Getty Images

A new national lockdown will be imposed in England, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced Saturday, as the number of COVID-19 cases in the country topped 1 million.

Details: Starting Thursday, people in England must stay at home, and bars and restaurants will close, except for takeout and deliveries. All non-essential retail will also be shuttered. Different households will be banned from mixing indoors. International travel, unless for business purposes, will be banned. The new measures will last through at least December 2.