Trump's Stance on Russia: Peace, democracy or buddy Putin?

12:01 Nov. 11, 2016

Peace, democracy or buddy Putin?

German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen arrives for a news conference in Berlin, Germany, July 13, 2016

Germany's Defense Minister urges Trump to clarify on which side he is on

U.S. president-elect Donald Trump needs to make clear his views on Russia, Germany's defense minister Ursula von der Leyen said.

"Donald Trump has to say clearly on which side he is. Whether he's on the side of the law, peace and democracy or whether he doesn't care about all that and instead he's looking for a best buddy (with Putin)," she told a ZDF talk show on Thursday.

During his election campaign Trump has expressed admiration for Putin, condemned by the West for his actions in Ukraine.

She added that while talking to Putin one should forget neither illegal annexation of Crimea nor bombardment of civilians in Syria's Aleppo.

Von der Leyen also stressed that NATO must be treated as an alliance of shared values rather than a business.

"What his advisors will hopefully tell him and what he needs to learn is that NATO isn't just a business. It's not a company," she said.

"You can't say 'the past doesn't matter, the values we share don't matter' but instead try to get as much money out of it (NATO) as possible and whether I can get a good deal out of it," she said.

The US president-elect has cast doubt on the alliance's mutual defence pact and threatened to abandon U.S. allies in Europe if they do not spend enough on defense.

Source: Reuters

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