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Iran Press TV

Russia says Obama signed defense bill to create problems for Trump

Iran Press TV

Tue Dec 27, 2016 10:19PM

US President Barack Obama's recent signing of the annual defense policy bill is meant to cause trouble for the incoming commander-in-chief, Donald Trump, Moscow says.

Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova released a statement Tuesday, blasting the last week signing of the bill before the Russia-friendly billionaire takes control of the White House.

In a statement on Friday, the lame duck Democratic president said he had signed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) into law despite being "disappointed" with refusal from the GOP-controlled Congress to apply his proposals for the 2017 budget.

"Overall, it appears that the Authorization Act has been adopted by the outgoing Obama administration, which is hastily introducing new sanctions against Russia, to create problems for the incoming Trump administration and complicate its relations on the international stage, as well as to force it to adopt an anti-Russia policy," said Zakharova.

She further voiced hope that the Republican administration of the real estate tycoon and reality TV star is "more sagacious" than Obama's in dealing with Russia.

"This policy has brought the current US administration, which believed that Russia would bow to pressure, into a dead end. We hope the new administration will be more sagacious."

Just like recent years, the 2017 bill bans US military cooperation with the Russians until Moscow has "ceased its occupation of Ukrainian territory and its aggressive activities that threaten the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine and members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)."

Eastern Ukraine has been the scene of deadly clashes between pro-Russia forces and Ukrainian army ever since Kiev launched military operations in April 2014 to crush protesters calling for greater autonomy in the region.

The United States and its allies in Europe accuse Moscow of having a hand in the conflict in eastern Ukraine, a claim Moscow denies.

Washington has resorted to a military build-up in Eastern Europe on the pretext of what it considers "Russian aggression."

"It is unclear how Russia can threaten the sovereignty and territorial integrity of NATO member states, when it is our American partners and their allies who have enhanced their military activities, expanding the territory of the alliance and moving their military capabilities closer to Russian borders," said the Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman (pictured above). "It is not surprising that we have to take this into account when planning our military development."

Apart from exchanging praise with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Trump has been a staunch opponent of NATO among other American alliances.

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