Putin: Normalization of Russia-US ties to benefit both sides

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Russian President Vladimir Putin says restoration of normal ties between Moscow and Washington will serve the interests of both sides, vowing to continue dialogue with US President Donald Trump.

“Normalization of bilateral relations is in the interest of the two countries. And we will continue the appropriate dialogue with the new US President Trump and the new administration,” Putin said at the Russia-US Business Dialogue, which is taking place during the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, on Friday.

He said a political will and “readiness to solve issues of mutual practical interest” were necessary to accomplish the task.

The Russian president said the foundation of US-Russia ties, which has been formed over decades, has been ruined in recent years.

He added that the current bilateral links between the two countries were at their lowest level since the Cold War. However, he said the sides continue to talk within different international formats, such as the United Nations, the G20, and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC).

The Russian president, described mutual economic cooperation between the two countries as generally good, urging American businesses to help restore regular dialogue between Russia and the United States.

“Help us restore a normal political dialogue. I am asking you on behalf of Russia and am appealing to the American side to help as well the newly elected President Donald Trump and his administration,” President Putin stated.

This photo taken on February 16, 2017 shows the New York Stock Exchange in New York, the US. (Photo by AFP)

Putin also expressed hope that the meeting of Russian and American entrepreneurs at the forum and their initiatives would help solve the “difficult task of restoring confidence and building a constructive dialogue.”

Meanwhile, he said the Russian government would try to create a good business environment for foreign investors, including Americans. “We will do our best to make business in Russia worthwhile for our American partners.”

Relations between Washington and Moscow deteriorated during the administration of former US President Barack Obama over the conflict in eastern Ukraine and the crisis in Syria.

Washington and its allies had levied broad economic sanctions against Russia over its alleged support for pro-Russia forces in eastern Ukraine.

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