June 19th, 2024

Relations between Moscow and Washington won’t change, no matter who wins the US election, Putin says

By James Jordan And Harriet Morris, The Associated Press on June 5, 2024.

Russian President Vladimir Putin visits the Lakhta Center skyscraper, the headquarters of Russian gas monopoly Gazprom in St. Petersburg, Russia, Wednesday, June 5, 2024. (Alexander Zholobov, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)

ST. PETERSBURG, Russia (AP) – Russian President Vladimir Putin said Wednesday that nothing will change in terms of Russia-U.S. relations regardless of whether Joe Biden or Donald Trump wins the American presidential election in November.

“We will work with any president the American people elect,” Putin said, responding to questions from international journalists on the sidelines of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.

“I say absolutely sincerely, I wouldn’t say that we believe that after the election something will change on the Russian track in the American politics,” he added. “We don’t think so. We think nothing that serious will happen.”

Trump’s felony conviction at his hush money trial last week was the result of “political infighting,” Putin added.

The Russian leader faced questions for the first time since his inauguration to a fifth term from senior news leaders of international news agencies, including The Associated Press.

Putin has used the annual forum as a showcase for touting Russia’s development and seeking investors. While meetings with journalists were part of previous sessions, he has not taken questions from Western journalists at the St. Petersburg event since sending troops to Ukraine.

Last year, journalists from countries that Russia regards as unfriendly – including the U.S., the U.K. and the European Union – were not invited, and Western officials and investors also steered clear of the session after wide-ranging sanctions were imposed on Moscow over Ukraine.

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