Russia confirms direct communications with Trump campaign prior to Election Day
Donald Trump speaks to "Extra" (Photo: Screen capture)

The election may be over, but the connections between president elect Donald Trump and Russian president Vladimir Putin aren't going away.

Per Bloomberg, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov on Thursday acknowledged that "there were contacts" with the Trump campaign during the 2016 election, and that Russian embassy staff met with members of Trump's campaign.

Trump's embrace of Putin during the campaign trail has been a major source of contention in American foreign policy circles, and intelligence experts even claimed that Trump ignored their briefings informing him that Russia was behind the hacks of the Democratic National Committee.

Trump has also vowed to improve relations with Russia as president, and has put NATO allies on notice that they'll need to pay tribute to the United States if they want to continue to have protection against possible Russian aggression.