Russian President Vladimir Putin says that Russia and the United States share "a common agenda" in many areas and that Moscow is prepared to work with whomever is elected U.S. president in November 2016.
In an interview on Russian state television broadcast on April 18, Putin said the United States and Russia should cooperate in areas such as combating the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, terrorism, and organized crime. He added that the two countries should do more to make the global economy "more democratic, stable, and balanced."
"We have disagreements on several issues on the international agenda. But at the same time there is something that unites us, that forces us to work together," Putin said.
Putin criticized the United States for unilaterally withdrawing in 2002 from the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty.
The United States and other Western countries have imposed sanctions on Russia over its actions in Ukraine, including the March 2014 annexation of the Ukrainian region of Crimea.
In the same April 18 interview, Putin declined to comment on whether Moscow would recognize as independent two self-proclaimed republics on territory in eastern Ukraine held by rebels who are fighting against government forces."We will act according to circumstances on the ground," Putin said.