Vladimir Putin avoids answering whether he is a ‘killer’ in remarkable new interview

Biden should ‘cancel’ meeting with Putin says research fellow

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Mr Putin was asked if he is a murderer by NBC correspondent Keir Simmons. In March, US President Joe Biden said he believed Mr Putin is a “killer”. He said: “Over my tenure, I’ve gotten used to attacks from all kinds of angles and from all kinds of areas under all kinds of pretext and reasons and of different calibre and fierceness, and none of it surprises me.”

Mr Simmons pressed Mr Putin again on the same question in bid to receive a definite answer.

The 68-year-old said: “I don’t think I heard you answer the question, a direct question, Mr President.”

The Russian President responded: “I did answer, I did answer. I’ll add if you let me.

“I’ve heard dozens of such accusations, especially a period of some great events during our counter terrorism events in northern caucuses.

“When that happens, I’m always guided by the interests of the Russian people. The Russian state.

“In sentience of terms of who calls somebody who, in terms of labels, this is not something I worry about in the least.”

Mr Putin said of Mr Trump: “I believe that former US president Mr Trump is an extraordinary individual… He is a colourful individual, but he didn’t come from the US establishment, he had not been part of big time politics before, and some like it some don’t like it but that is a fact.”

Since taking office at the beginning of the year, Mr Biden has taken a tough stance on Russia.

He told ABC News that Mr Putin is “going to pay, you’ll see shortly,” after he said he was a “killer”.

The US President received warnings from observers that his words could be unwelcome in Moscow.

Sarah Rainsford, the BBC’s Moscow correspondent, speaking during the broadcaster’s ‘Start the Week’ programme, said many in Russia saw Mr Biden’s remarks as “crossing the line”.

When asked whether Mr Biden had in any way changed relations, the reporter said: “Well, it’s not made a difference; the fact that when he was asked whether or not he agreed Putin was a killer and he said, ‘Yes’, then I think that was met with anger here.

“State media went to town on that one, they say it as the President crossing a red line.”

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