Ex-Russian minister delivers a dire warning about Trump's election theft efforts
Kremlin photos of Putin and Trump

On Wednesday, Newsweek reported that a former Russian minister is warning that outgoing President Donald Trump's attacks on the electoral process are reminiscent of how Russian President Vladimir Putin has bent that country to his will.

"Andrei Kozyrev, who was foreign minister under President Boris Yeltsin between 1991 and 1996, compared the challenge by President Donald Trump and his allies to November 4's election result with concessions made in Russia in the 1990s which chipped away at its nascent democracy, and ushered in Vladimir Putin's grip on power," reported Brendan Cole.

Kozyrev warned in an email that Russian leaders caved to pressure from "the demanding power-grabbing leader in the late 1990s."

"In defense of their cowardice, they pledged that it would be just a one-off concession, not a change to the constitutional order," said Kozyrev. "Democracy is easy to lose but hard to regain. The free and fair elections along with subsequent orderly transitions of power never returned."

Putin has served in various high offices of the Russian government in some form continuously since 1999, amassing an insurmountable stranglehold on the politics of the country, and his party, United Russia, has become dominant. Many of his political rivals have been targeted, most recently with the poisoning of Alexei Navalny.

Trump, who has had a relatively close relationship with Putin on the world stage, has refused to acknowledge the legitimacy of his election loss to President-elect Joe Biden, encouraging Republican lawmakers in Congress to challenge the Electoral College results and promoting "Stop the Steal" rallies for his supporters.