Will Kirby — Daily Express Nov 15, 2016
RUSSIAN leader Vladimir Putin has reportedly called President-elect Donald Trump to discuss forming an alliance to bring down terror cult Islamic State.
The two men spoke for the first time on Monday, with both keen to improve relations between their respective countries following Trump’s shock election win.
Russian news claims Putin called Trump as he prepares to talk with the US “on the basis of mutual respect, non-intervention into each other’s internal affairs”.
Putin and President-elect Trump allegedly agreed to “work to channel bilateral relationships into constructive cooperation, to combine efforts to tackle international terrorism and extremism, and to continue contact by telephone and to work towards meeting in person”.
Russia has been engaged in military intervention in Syria over the past year, assisting Syrian president Bashar al-Assad against rebels in a bloody civil war.
During his election campaign Trump spoke repeatedly of his desire to destroy ISIS, leading to suggestions that he could be willing to work with Putin to tackle the militant group.
A statement from Trump’s transition team said: “President-elect Trump noted to President Putin that he is very much looking forward to having a strong and enduring relationship with Russia and the people of Russia.
“During the call, the two leaders discussed a range of issues including the threats and challenges facing the United States and Russia, strategic economic issues and the historical US-Russia relationship that dates back over 200 years”.
The foreign policies of Moscow and team Trump has been described as “phenomenally close” by Moscow spokesman Dmitry Peskov, giving fresh hope that the two leaders can work together when Trump takes to the White House on January 20.
The Kremlin also released a statement, saying: “Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump shared the opinion that it is necessary to join forces against the common enemy number one: international terrorism and extremism.
“In this spirit, the question of regulating the conflict in Syria was also discussed.”
They reportedly agreed to stay in touch by telephone and plan to meet in person over the coming months.