Russian President Vladimir Putin Thursday said he needed friends in his fight against terrorism and invited US President-elect Donald Trump to normalize relations between the two countries, which have deteriorated considerably under Barack Obama.
We do not want any confrontation, we do not look for enemies, said Putin. We need friends, but we will not allow them to disparage our national interests, he added. When referring to the United States, and particularly President Barack Obama, he stressed that Russia is willing to cooperate with the new government of Donald Trump, who is due to take office on Jan. 20.
Putin made it clear he was willing to return to the path of cooperation with the United States and forge an alliance against a real and not imagined threat: international terrorism. In the speech, he expressed his desire to end antagonisms and maintain relations with Washington on an equal footing. He described bilateral cooperation as the solution to global and regional problems and a common responsibility in ensuring international security and stability.
But the Russian leader also warned that his country will not allow the violation or the contempt of its interests and will build its present and its future without suggestions. Russia's role in the Ukrainian crisis, the Syrian conflict, and NATO's activities in Eastern Europe has provoked the most tension with the West since the end of the Cold War.
Putin is prepared to enter into a dialogue for the creation of an Eurasian association that would bridge the Russian Federation from the Kaliningrad Baltic enclave to the port of Vladivostok in the Pacific Ocean. He also stressed Russia's strategic interest in strengthening cooperation with Asian countries, particularly China and India, but denied that this was dictated by cooling relations with the United States and the EU.”