Putin credits Trump as ‘clever’ and ‘already a statesman’

by WorldTribune Staff, December 5, 2016

U.S. President-elect Donald Trump is a “clever man” who is “already a statesman” and Russia is “ready to cooperate” with his incoming administration, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Dec. 4.

Russian President Vladimir Putin delivers his annual address to the Federal Assembly on Dec. 1.
President Vladimir Putin delivers his annual address to the Federal Assembly on Dec. 1.

“Because he achieved success in business, it suggests that he is a clever man. And if he is a clever man, then he will fully and quite quickly understand another level of responsibility. We assume that he will be acting from these positions,” Putin said in an interview with state-controlled NTV.

During the U.S. election campaign, Trump called Putin a better leader than U.S. President Barack Obama, noting the Russian leader had “an 82 percent approval rating.”

“I think when he calls me brilliant I’ll take the compliment, ok?” Trump said.

Putin told NTV on Dec. 4: “Trump was an entrepreneur and a businessman. He is already a statesman, he is the head of the United States of America, one of the world’s leading countries. We are ready to cooperate with the new U.S. administration. We have a shared responsibility to ensure international security.”

In his annual address to the Federal Assembly on Dec. 1, Putin told Russia’s political elite: “We don’t want confrontation with anyone. We don’t need it. We are not seeking and have never sought enemies. We need friends.”

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