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Putin vows to restore European cooperation: But why?

Телевидение
22.12.2015
ua_today
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EU sanctions against Russia are extended until July next year. The formal declaration was made Monday after meetings during a key summit in Brussels last week. Diplomats say the banking, energy and defence sectors are mainly targeted.

But there are doubts the anti-Russian measures imposed over Moscow’s actions in Ukraine will automatically be rolled over next time. Some EU nations have attempted to reengage with Moscow on efforts to counter terrorism and seek an end to the war in Syria.

It’s this sort of cooperation with Europe that Russian President Vladimir Putin is hoping to take advantage of. The Kremlin leader made the suggestion in a documentary aired last Sunday on state-TV channel RTR.

Vladimir Putin, Russian President

“It seems to me that interests of European countries - maybe I am wrong and then I should be told otherwise - are in uniting efforts with Russia in economy, in politics, in the fight against terror, in the fight for resolving environmental problems and in the fight with the organised crime. And we are ready for this work. "

Meanwhile, Putin also expressed an interest with all international partners to resolve the war in Syria. He said….

“It is easy for us to work with the President Assad and with the American side - I've talked about it recently with the President Obama - and with our friends from the Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries. Why is it easy? We do not wag the tail and change our position. We slowly, before formulating our own position, listened to everybody and chose the line which we think is acceptable to everyone."

But despite the Kremlin calls for cooperation to end the war in Syria, Putin is actually benefiting from it. That was the argument of chess champion Gary Kasparov during a Fox News interview in October. He argued that the Kremlin strongman could use Syria to boost domestic approval ratings, which could be hit by growing economic woes. The conflict also raises the oil price, a key source of petrodollars for Russia, which relies on energy for income.

The wave of refugees flowing into Europe could also increase, boosting support for far-right parties - who could then influence an easing of sanctions on Russia.

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