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    A reporter with a poster before President Vladimir Putin's twelfth annual news conference at Moscow's World Trade Center in Krasnaya Presnya

    'Under the Sign of Putin': Russia Was Key Player in Global Arena in 2016

    © Sputnik / Alexey Filippov
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    Throughout the outgoing year, Russia has emerged as one of the key players involved in the majority of important processes in the global arena, an article on France24 read.

    The crisis in Syria, an OPEC deal to cut oil production and the presidential election in the United States – in each of these cases, Russia made headlines across the world.

    The year 2016 has been "under the sign" of Russian President Vladimir Putin, according to the article.

    First of all, Moscow managed to significantly increase its global reputation with its successful military campaign in Syria. The operation began in Autumn 2015, but the main advances were achieved this year.

    "The Middle East problem has been used by Russian diplomats to restore full-fledged contacts with Washington," said Julien Nocetti, an expert on Russia at the French Institute of International Relations (IFRI).

    According to the analyst, Russian President Vladimir Putin took advantage of the situation amid Washington’s unwillingness to get involved in the conflict and the European Union getting cold feet on the issue.

    Russia also used its best endeavors in the context of an OPEC deal on oil production freeze.

    "The deal signed December 7 between OPEC members and non-OPEC seems to be a result of direct negotiations between Moscow and Riyadh," according to the article.

    Moreover, Russia has been often mentioned in relation to the presidential election in the US.

    Some US officials and media outlets accused Moscow of interference with the electoral process. However, Washington has not yet provided evidence of Russia’s involvement into the 2016 Democratic National Committee’s email leak.

    According to Nocetti, all those allegations sparked unprecedented buzz and Russia found itself in the spotlight of US political discussions.

    However, the most problematic issue for the Russian economy, Western sanctions, remains unsettled.

    Nocetti suggested that removal of sanctions will be one of the top priorities of Russian diplomacy in the coming year.

    The article concluded that Russia’s major achievements in the global arena are visible.

    "So, Vladimir Putin should be breaking out a bottle of champagne now," Nocetti concluded.


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    diplomacy, OPEC, Vladimir Putin, United States, Russia
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