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Russian President Vladimir Putin, speaking at the annual St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, said he is ready to talk to Trump, as he was invited, but it hasn’t happened yet. Putin declared there were areas the US and Russia could work together, and gave his views on sanctions, which are harming the Russian economy.
“Certainly, we cannot be content with the level and nature of Russian-US relations. We are ready for dialogue. Mr. Trump has suggested holding a separate meeting, but things go wrong for us,” Putin said. “Many problems are emerging, but we are ready to hold a detailed dialogue. I think it is long overdue,” reported Russian state news agency TASS.
The Russian leader acknowledged there were some issues that both countries agreed were important that could be jointly worked towards, like stopping an arms race before it starts.
“Certainly, those steps, which we are talking about now, related to North Korea and Iran do not make us closer, but they are also a reason to discuss these issues,” Putin said.
Regarding ‘meddling’ in US elections, Putin declared, “Instigator. I had nothing in common with the election campaign of Mr. Trump,” Putin replied to the host of a plenary session at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, who supposed that.
“We, along with our US partners, must agree on some uniform rules of behavior; it is crucial, because this is what’s at the base of our discussion today – trust. Trust exists or it doesn’t, and then nothing good can come out of anything. And then the element of force is the only thing that remains, and this might lead to a tragedy,” Putin said.
He noted that the practice of unilateral sanctions “is piling up”. In particular, Putin reminded that US slapped a several billion dollars’ fine on the French bank “Paribas” and “Deutsche bank” for failing to implement unilateral US sanctions against Iran, “the same happened to a Japanese bank.” “And then what? Everyone paid up,” the Russian president noted. “This needs to end, this is unacceptable. This is what I’m talking about.” “If this continues, what good can come out of it? It jeopardizes the existing world order,” the Russian leader stressed, wrote TASS.
The American ambassador to Russia, John Huntsman, speaking at the forum as well, stated that Russia must deal with the internal issues causing the sanctions before there can be a discussion about lifting them, reported RFERL.