U.S. President Barack Obama believes that the president-elect, Donald Trump, whose inauguration is scheduled for January 20, 2017, will protect the values of democracy and international norms, and stand up to Russia if necessary, according to his speech during a joint press conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin Thursday.
”My principle approach to Russia has been constant since I first came into office. Russia is an important country. It is a military superpower. It has influence in the region and it has influence around the world. And in order for us to solve many big problems around the world it is in our interest to work with Russia and obtain their cooperation,” Obama said, according to a video published on the White House website.
The U.S. president has said he saw constructive relations with Russia but he has also been ”as realistic in recognizing that there are some significant differences in how Russia views the world and how we view the world”, in terms of ”the values of democracy, and free speech, and international norms, and rule of law, respecting the ability of other countries to determine their own destiny and preserve their sovereignty and territorial integrity”.
”On issues like Ukraine, on issues like Syria, we`ve had very significant differences,” said Obama.
”And my hope is that the president-elect coming in, takes a similarly constructive approach, finding areas where we can cooperate with Russia where our values and interests align but that the president-elect is also willing to stand up to Russia where they are deviating from our values and international norms,” he said.