Putin congratulates Trump, ignores Obama in New Year statement

Russian President Vladimir Putin has snubbed outgoing US President Barack Obama on New Year by expressing his good wishes to President-elect Donald Trump instead.

In his annual New Year’s greeting to his foreign counterparts, Putin also congratulated former US Presidents George W. Bush and George H.W. Bush without mentioning Obama, CNN reported Saturday.

Putin also expressed hope that Washington and Moscow could take “real steps” to improve ties after the 45th American president’s inauguration on January 20.

The Russian head of state said he was optimistic that the two countries, “acting in a constructive and pragmatic manner, will be able to take real steps to restore the mechanisms of bilateral cooperation in various areas and take their interaction in the international arena to a whole new level.”

Directly addressing Trump in his message released by the Kremlin on Friday, Putin also addressed the significance of strong ties between Russia…

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