Chinese, Iranian and North Korean attempts to meddle in the 2018 US elections are, like Russia’s efforts, “a sufficient national security concern,” White House national security adviser John Bolton said Sunday.
“I can say definitively that it’s a sufficient national security concern about Chinese meddling, Iranian meddling and North Korean meddling that we’re taking steps to try and prevent it,” Bolton said Sunday on ABC’s “This Week.”
When asked by Martha Raddatz about President Donald Trump’s statement on Twitter Saturday morning that those focused on Russian meddling “should start also looking in another direction, China,” Bolton said “all four of those countries” are a concern.
Bolton declined to say whether he had seen examples of Chinese election interference in the past, but stressed that “looking at the 2018 election, those are the four countries that we’re most concerned about.”
Bolton also said Sunday that he intends to discuss evidence of Russian attempts to interfere with the 2018 election during his meeting with Kremlin officials in Geneva on Thursday.
“We’ll see what their response is, but it’s not simply a question of speaking with the Russians,” Bolton said. “There are a lot of things we’re doing that we can’t talk about specifically, and that includes both defensive and offensive cyber operations to protect the integrity of the election process.”
Bolton’s trip to Geneva, a follow-up to Trump’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki last month, will be one of several diplomatic talks he will make in the coming weeks, including stops in Israel and Ukraine, to discuss “a range of important national security issues,” White House press secretary Sarah Sanders told reporters Tuesday.