Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s indictment has claimed that a Russian campaign to meddle in the presidential election included efforts to suppress black voter turnout.
The shocking claim was buried on page 18 of the 37-page indictment issued on Thursday, as part of Mueller’s ongoing probe into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 election.
It names 13 Russian nationals as well as the Internet Research Agency, a notorious ‘troll farm’ that conducts online influence campaigns through bogus social media accounts. No Americans are named in the indictment as participating in the scheme.
The indictment claims that in the later half of 2016, the defendants ‘began to encourage US minority groups not to vote in the 2016 US presidential election or to vote for a third-party US presidential candidate’.
Mueller cites alleged Russian-controlled Instagram account ‘Woke Blacks’, which posted: ‘[A] particular hype and hatred fro Trump is misleading the people and forcing Blacks to vote Killary. We cannot resort to the lesser of two devils. Then we’d surely be better off without voting AT ALL.’
Another Russian-controlled account called ‘Blacktivist’ hosted a Russia-purchased sponsored post urging voters to support Green Party candidate Jill Stein, according to the indictment.
‘Trust me, it’s not a wasted vote,’ the post read.
A third example targeted Muslim voters in the days before the election.
‘American Muslims [are] boycotting elections today, most of the American Muslim voters refuse to vote for Hillary Clinton because she wants to continue the war on Muslims in the middle east and voted yes for invading Iraq,’ the post from ‘United Muslims of America’ read.