US alleges Russia meddling in Chilean protests

WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States says there are indications that Russian activity in social media is exacerbating divisions in Chile, which has been rocked by deadly protests.

A senior State Department official said Friday that the alleged online activity reflected increased Russian engagement in the Americas.

The official did not provide details to support the allegation and did not identify specific Russian entities said to be involved in the activity. The official was not authorized to talk to journalists and requested anonymity.

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov says the allegation is false, according to the Interfax news agency.

Chilean President Sebastián Piñera has canceled two major international summits after protests over economic hardship and other grievances. At least 20 people died, hundreds were injured and businesses and infrastructure were damaged.

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