Mon Apr 24, 2017 04:56PM
The file photo shows Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov.
The file photo shows Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov.

Russia says it shows respect for the choice of French people during the first round of the country’s presidential election and denies having sided with any candidate in the Sunday polls.

"We respect the choice of French citizens. We are in favor of building good and mutually beneficial relations," Russia's RIA Novosti news agency quoted Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov as saying on Monday.

"These are completely incorrect assertions, they are quite primitive … In this case to say that Russia more or less supports one candidate or another would be wrong," he added.

The remarks come as Russia is seen by many as a supporter of far-right candidate Marine Le Pen. In late March, Le Pen met President Vladimir Putin in a surprise visit to Moscow ahead of the French presidential election on April 23.

This photo taken on April 21, 2017, shows a man passing by campaign posters of
French presidential election candidates Emmanuel Macron (R) and Marine Le Pen in Lyon. (Photo by AFP)

Pro-European centrist Emmanuel Macron and Le Pen claimed the most votes in the Sunday election to make it through to a second round run-off on May 7.

Ahead of the presidential election, Macron's campaign had accused Russia of using hacking and fake news to interfere with the French vote. 

Last month, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Russia had not interfered in the affairs of any countries, particularly in pre-election processes.