Putin on Russian-US relations
Russia perceives the United States as a superpower, with which it wants to establish strong partnership, the Russian President Vladimir Putin said, speaking at an Arctic forum in Arkhangelsk.
Russian President noted that Russia and the US have very good examples of cooperation "There are huge prospects for Russia, for the United States, and for the whole world at large. I strongly hope we will embark on a two-way road and will improve Russian-American relations to the benefit of our peoples and the whole world," he stressed..
Vladimir Putin said that contacts of Russian Ambassador to the US Sergey Kislyak with local politicians are restricted and are unreasonably given a hostile reception.
"While contacts of the Russian ambassador to the US are limited, any of his meetings is given a hostile reception or is seen as some espionage move. Isn’t this nonsense? What is the ambassador for there? For communicating with people, maintaining contacts with the political elite, with business people, with members of the Congress and Senate, with members of the government, the administration - otherwise what for did he go there?" he asked, stressing that this is a global diplomatic practice.
Some forces in the US are playing the Russian card in order to strengthen their political position, Putin noted, adding that lies, fake news and provocations concerning Russia are being used "in the US domestic political battle.
The new US administration should take steps to help resolve regional crises, including the Ukrainian conflict, Putin said.
The Russian president said that he hopes that the US will take the path of cooperation. "As for Ukraine, we know that the US and some other countries think that the worse relations are between Russia and Ukraine, the better it is for them, because it weakens Russia and prevents integration processes that could strengthen Russia, particularly in the economic sphere," TASS cited Putin as saying.
"In general, these people who behave so irresponsibly, what are they driving us to, including the US people? It seems to me this is a big mistake, and I very much hope that someday, the sooner the better, the situation will normalize," Putin summed up.
Putin also said he is ready to meet with US President Donald Trump on the sidelines of the Arctic summit in Finland. "Finland, in my view, is a very convenient country, and Helsinki is a very suitable platform for organizing such events," Putin told the international Arctic forum in Russia’s Arkhangelsk.