Wednesday 17 March 2021
“He will pay the price”
Biden calls Putin a “killer”
The relationship between the United States and Russia has reached a new low: After intelligence reports of electoral interference in Trump’s favor, the new US president threatens the Kremlin. Biden makes it clear: He thinks Putin is a killer. Moscow responds with indignation.
US President Joe Biden considers Russian President Vladimir Putin a “murderer.” In one Interview Biden also told ABC News that Putin would “pay” for his attempt to undermine his 2020 presidential candidacy. Biden was asked in the interview if he thought Putin was a “killer” – the new US president replied: “I am.” Biden did not provide further details and did not clarify whether he was referring to the attempt to poison Kremlin critic Alexander Navalny.
Moscow responded immediately and sharply to Biden’s comments. “Putin is our president and an attack on him is an attack on our country,” wrote the speaker of the Russian House of Commons, Vyacheslav Volodin, on the Internet Telegram service. “This is hysteria because of impotence,” added an influential Putin close, referring to Biden’s comments.
The Kremlin rejects allegations of election interference
US authorities released a new report only on Tuesday, according to which Russia interfered in the 2020 US presidential election – not just in the 2016 election in favor of President-elect Donald Trump. Since taking office in January, Biden has taken a tougher stance toward Moscow than his predecessor, who is accused of being too close to the Kremlin’s head.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov rejected the report on the US elections, describing it as “baseless and baseless.” “We consider this report a hoax,” Pisco said. The Kremlin expressed its regret over the publication of the report, which would serve as a “pretext” to impose new possible sanctions on Moscow.
Attacks on the American Electoral Infrastructure
The US Department of Homeland Security and Justice had previously announced that, according to US authorities, Russia and Iran attacked the infrastructure for the US presidential elections on November 3. The attackers succeeded in “compromising the security of several networks that managed some optional functions”. Foreign parties did not succeed in influencing the election outcome.
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov also described the US report as “baseless.” He told the official RIA Novosti news agency that “hostile steps against Russia” have become “normal” in Washington. Moscow is accused of interfering in the 2016 US elections to help Donald Trump win. After Biden won the election, Putin congratulated him as one of the last heads of state and government.
Relations between the United States and Russia have been at their lowest since the end of the Cold War, in part due to the Navalny case. The Kremlin critic was the victim of a poisoned attack in Russia in August and was subsequently treated in a German hospital. He was arrested upon his return to Russia in January, and shortly thereafter he was sentenced to prison for alleged violations of his surveillance requirements. In early March, the United States imposed sanctions on the head of Russia’s domestic intelligence service, Alexander Portnico, and several close associates of Putin over the Navalny case.
The US withdrawal from Afghanistan: May 1 will be difficult
In an ABC interview, Biden also commented on plans to withdraw from Afghanistan. The complete withdrawal of US soldiers from Afghanistan on the first of May is “difficult”, but it is possible. “It could happen, but it is difficult,” Biden said when asked about the deal with the extremist Islamic Taliban. Biden announced that he would announce his decision in this regard soon. The US President said that he was “in the process of deciding on the date of withdrawal.” This will be announced after consultations with US allies and the government in Kabul. Biden criticized the agreements concluded with the Taliban under his predecessor, describing them as “not very solid.” Trump adhered to the agreements and reduced the number of US forces in Afghanistan to 2,500.
The agreement signed in February 2020 provides for the withdrawal of all foreign forces from Afghanistan by May 1 – provided the Taliban provide reliable security guarantees, such as ending ties with the al-Qaeda extremist network. Meanwhile, Washington accused the Taliban of failing to adhere to the terms of the agreement. Biden ordered a review of the agreement.
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