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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Putin: Russia Ready to Work with US

by VOA News April 18, 2015

In what appears to be a softened rhetorical tone, Russian President Vladimir Putin has said that Russia needs to work with the United States on a common agenda.

In an interview Saturday with the Rossiya 1 TV channel, Putin said that despite disagreements on several issues on the international stage, the two countries also share many common interests.

President Putin said that making the world economy more democratic, measured and balanced, so that the world order is more democratic, is one common item on a U.S.-Russia agenda. Some other mutual interests Russia and U.S. share, according to President Putin, are non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, combating organized crime, terrorism and fighting poverty.

Putin has in the past fiercely attacked the United States and the West in general for instigating the Ukraine crisis through a Western-backed 'coup' against Ukraine's former leader Viktor Yanukovich, a staunch ally of Moscow.

Thursday, in an annual TV call-in show President Putin accused the United States of trying to maintain dominance on world affairs, saying it wanted 'not allies, but vassals.'

Relations between Moscow and Washington and other Western powers have reached a low point since Russia's annexation of the Crimean peninsula in 2014 and Moscow's involvement in continuous armed conflict in eastern Ukraine, in which it is providing support for separatist rebels who are fighting Kyiv government forces.

Russia has denied direct involvement in the Ukraine crisis, but has recognized that there are only Russian volunteers fighting alongside rebels there.

The United States and the European Union have affirmed that they will keep sanctions in place in an attempt to deter the Kremlin's moves in eastern Ukraine and until a cease-fire agreed to in Minsk in February, is fully implemented in the Donbass region.

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