United States President-elect Donald Trump has said that he may lift the sanctions on Russia imposed by the Barack Obama administration, if they are willing to be “helpful in battling terrorists”, according to an interview to Wall Street Journal. “If you get along and if Russia is really helping us, why would anybody have sanctions if somebody’s doing some really great things?” he said during the interview published on Friday.
Trump said he would set up a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin soon after he takes charge of he administration on January 20. “I understand that they would like to meet, and that’s absolutely fine with me,” he told the newspaper.
Trump reiterated that he wouldn’t commit to the ‘One China’ policy on Taiwan unless Beijing made trade concessions. Relations between Trump and the Chinese government deteriorated after he spoke to the Taiwanese leader following his win at the presidential elections. Commenting on this, Trump said the US had sold military equipment worth $2 billion to Taiwan last year. “It would have been very rude not to accept the phone call,” he said.
Earlier, Trump had said that he would label China a currency manipulator after he took change. “Certainly they are manipulators…But I am not looking to do that,” he said on Friday. He alleged that China was deliberately devaluing their currency, adding that the US companies cannot compete with the Chinese because “our currency is strong and it is killing us”.
The US on December 30 had expelled 35 suspected Russian spies and imposed sanctions on two Russian intelligence agencies in retaliation to the alleged Kremlin hacking. US intelligence agencies believe that Kremlin had breached the accounts of Democratic Party organisations and its candidates ahead of the 2016 US presidential elections, under the instructions of Putin himself. They have said that the Russians hacked into the accounts to help Trump win the presidential race. Russia has repeatedly denied involvement in the hacking.