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Donald Trump and Russian President Putin hold phone call, Kremlin says

In their first call since the US election, Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin have said they will cooperate in tackling terrorism and extremism. Both also noted the "extremely unsatisfactory state of Russian-US relations."

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Trump and Putin agree to normalize ties

In a statement late on Monday, the Kremlin confirmed that Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin have spoken on the telephone for the first time since Trump defeated Hillary Clinton last Tuesday in the US presidential election.

During the phone call, the Russian president and US president-elect reportedly agreed to "channel" relations between Russia and the US and "combine efforts to tackle international terrorism and extremism."

Trump's transition office said the two men also discussed "strategic economic issues," and that Trump was "very much looking forward to having a strong and enduring relationship with Russia and the people of Russia."

Putin was one of the first foreign leaders to congratulate the president-elect on his victory at the polls last week. 

Tense US-Russian relations

During their conversation, Putin and Trump noted "the extremely unsatisfactory state of Russian-US relations at present" and "declared the need for active joint work to normalize them," the Kremlin statement said. It added that any dialogue should be based on "equality, mutual respect and non-intervention in each other's internal affairs."

Ahead of Trump entering the White House in January, both men said they will continue to stay in contact by phone and work towards meeting in person.

Trump will take office on Januray 20, replacing Barack Obama whose relations with Putin have become tense over various issues including the Syrian conflict and Ukraine.

ksb/se (Reuters, AP, dpa)

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