Russian President Vladimir Putin and his new US counterpart Donald Trump have agreed to develop relations “as equals” and to establish “real coordination” against the Islamic State (IS) group in Syria, the Kremlin said.
“The two sides expressed a willingness to work actively together to stabilise and develop Russian-American cooperation on a constructive basis, as equals, and to mutual benefit,” Putin said in a statement yesterday after the two men’s first phone conversation since Trump took office.
Describing it as a “positive” exchange, the Kremlin said they touched on many subjects from the Iranian nuclear deal to the Ukraine and Israeli-Palestinian conflicts, the tensions on the Korean peninsula and trade relations.
The “priority” in their talks was the fight against international terrorism.
“The presidents said they were in favour of putting in place real coordination of Russian and American actions to destroy IS and the other terrorist groupings in Syria,” the statement said.
They both also expressed the desire to organise a meeting between the two leaders, the Kremlin said.
Putin and Trump spoke for the first time by phone in November just after the billionaire tycoon’s surprise election victory.
They agreed on the need to “normalise” relations between Moscow and Washington after the tensions during the previous US administration of president Barack Obama over the conflicts in Syria and Ukraine.