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    US State Dep. to Refrain From Lecturing Trump on Handling US-Russian Relations

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    The US Department of State is not in a position to deliver a homily on how the administration of President-elect Donald Trump should handle Washington’s important, but complicated relationship with Moscow, department spokesman John Kirby said in a briefing on Monday.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Kirby stated that Washington relations with Moscow remain critical and in "some cases very, very challenging."

    "The degree to which or how the incoming administration will look at that is up for them to decide. It is not our place to provide a lecture to the incoming administration one way or the other."

    The United States and Russia, Kirby continued, have worked together on issues like the Iran nuclear agreement, but have major differences with respect to Ukraine, Syria and cyberspace, among other areas.

    Members of Trump’s transition team met with Under Secretary of State for Management Patrick Kennedy and Counselor Kristie Kenney on Friday, Kirby noted.

    On Sunday, Russian President Vladimir Putin told reporters at the APEC Summit in Peru that Trump reaffirmed his willingness to normalize US-Russian relations in a phone conversation they had earlier this month.

    Putin warned, however, that in any country there are always differences between a presidential candidate’s campaign rhetoric and the actual policies pursued once in office.

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    State Department, John Kirby, Donald Trump, Russia, United States
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