Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida, says he does not want Russian President Vladimir Putin’s endorsement in the race to the White House. The GOP presidential candidate says frontrunner Donald Trump should not be honored by Putin’s comments that he is an "outstanding and talented" person.
Putin "is not someone who is going to go down in history as a great leader," said Rubio.
"Vladimir Putin has jailed and murdered reporters and political opponents, he bombed an aprtment building as a pretext to attack the Chechens, he is repsonsible for the downing of that Malaysian airliner over the Ukraine."
Responding to Trump's statement that "our country does a lot fo killing also," Rubio says:
"That's outrageous. I don't know of a single documented instance in which the president has ever ordered the assassination of journalists... we've enetered a portion of politics where nothing surprises me anymore."
The Russian apartment bombings were a series of explosions that hit four apartment blocks in the Russian cities of Buynaksk, Moscow and Volgodonsk in September 1999, killing 307 and injuring more than 1700 people and spreading a wave of fear across the country. The bombings, together with the Dagestan War, led the country into the Second Chechen War.
The blasts hit Buynaksk on 4 September, Moscow on 9 September and 13 September and Volgodonsk on 16 September. A similar explosive device was found and defused in an apartment block in the Russian city of Ryazan on 22 September. The next day Prime Minister of Russia Vladimir Putin praised the vigilance of the inhabitants of Ryazan and ordered the air bombing of Grozny, which marked the beginning of the Second Chechen War.
According to the official version and sentences of judicial authorities of Russia, acts of terrorism were organized and financed by heads of the illegal armed group Islamic institute "Caucasus". Thirty-six hours later, three FSB agents who had planted this device were arrested by the local police. The incident was declared to be a training exercise. These events led to allegations that the bombings were a "false flag" attack perpetrated by the FSB in order to legitimize the resumption of military activities in Chechnya and bring Vladimir Putin to the presidency.