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Trump thanks Putin for praising US economy

December 15, 2017

The US president offered his thanks to his Russian counterpart in a phone call. The two also discussed the crisis in North Korea and bilateral relations.

Trump und Putin at the APEC summit in Vietnam
Image: picture-alliance/dpa/AP

In a Thursday telephone call to Vladimir Putin, US President Trump thanked his Russian counterpart for praising America's economic performance.

The two also discussed the nuclear crisis in North Korea, according to official statements from both governments. Earlier this week, the US said it was prepared to talk directly with Pyongyang "without preconditions."

The White House released a short statement confirming the telephone conversation and leading with Trump's thanks.

"President Trump thanked President Putin for acknowledging America's strong economic performance in his annual press conference," the statement said. It then added that, "the two presidents also discussed working together to resolve the very dangerous situation in North Korea."

Putin-Trump Graffiti in Lithuania
Commentators have described Putin and Trump's relationship as a 'bromance,' althought their alleged ties have become a domestic cause for concern for TrumpImage: picture alliance/dpa/M. Singer/K. Ruke

Earlier on Thursday during his marathon press conference, Putin had told the audience that global market growth "shows confidence in the American economy. With all due respect to [Trump's] opponents, these are objective facts." He also welcomed the US' "awareness of reality" in the North Korea situation.

Like the White House, the Kremlin released a short post-phone call statement, saying that the two leaders had discussed the North Korean nuclear threat, as well as relations between the US and Russia.

According to AP, the Kremlin statement noted that Trump initiated the call.

Bilateral relations between the Trump administration and Putin's government have been an ongoing source of problems for the US president. Special Counsel Robert Mueller is currently investigating possible collusion and unlawful communication between the Trump campaign and transition team and the Russian government.

cmb/se (AFP, AP)

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