10:49 Nov. 16, 2016
The Republican Senator is a sharp critic of Putin's actions in Ukraine and Syria
Republican Senator John McCain on Tuesday warned against "resetting" relations with Russia under Donald Trump's presidency.
The 2008 presidential nominee and chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee said that in the wake of Russian airstrikes in Syria, Russian aggression in Ukraine and interference in the elections, the US should not "place much faith" in Putin's wish to improve ties.
"With the U.S. presidential transition underway, Vladimir Putin has said in recent days that he wants to improve relations with the United States. We should place as much faith in such statements as any other made by a former KGB agent who has plunged his country into tyranny, murdered his political opponents, invaded his neighbours, threatened America's allies, and attempted to undermine America's elections," McCain said in a statement.
The senior senator added that "the price of another ‘reset' would be complicity in Putin and Assad's butchery of the Syrian people."
"The Obama Administration's last attempt at resetting relations with Russia culminated in Putin's invasion of Ukraine and military intervention in the Middle East," he added.
Since the start of Russian aggression in Ukraine, McCain has been a vocal supporter of providing lethal aid to the Ukrainian army - which is fighting the Russian regular army and Kremlin-led militant groups in the east.