Russian President Vladimir Putin has called Donald Trump “a clever man” who should “quickly understand” his role.
In an interview with state-controlled NTV, he said the US president-elect “is already a statesman”.
Mr Putin has previously voiced hopes that the Trump administration will help improve US-Russia relations.
During the election campaign, Mr Trump called Mr Putin a better leader than US President Barack Obama – a remark which drew criticism in the US.
Mr Putin told the TV channel: “Trump was an entrepreneur and a businessman. He is already a statesman, he is the head of the United States of America, one of the world’s leading countries.
“Because he achieved success in business, it suggests that he is a clever man. And if he is a clever man, then he will fully and quite quickly understand another level of responsibility. We assume that he will be acting from these positions.”
On 1 December, Mr Putin told Russia’s political elite: “We don’t want confrontation with anyone. We don’t need it. We are not seeking and have never sought enemies. We need friends.
“We are ready to…
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