: RFE/RL: Obama says Putin trying to undermine European unity

10:52 Apr. 26, 2016

RFE/RL: Obama says Putin trying to undermine European unity

U.S President Barack Obama speaks in front of the European Union Flag at the Hannover Messe Trade Fair in Hannover, Germany, Monday April 25, 2016. (AP Images)

U.S. President speaks on Russia's fear of European unity

U.S. President Barack Obama has said Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin views European unity as a threat and is trying to undermine it, according to the Radio Liberty.

Read also RFE/RL: Russia sanctions must remain until Moscow complies with Minsk deal - Obama

In an interview with CBS News due to air on April 26, Obama cited Europe's migrant crisis as an example.

"The strain it's putting on Europe's politics, the way that it advances far-right nationalism, the degree to which it is encouraging a break-up of European unity - that in some cases is being exploited by somebody like Mr. Putin," he said.

Read also We have to resolve conflict in Ukraine - Obama

Obama said he has sought to disabuse the Russian leader of his belief that NATO and the European Union are threats.

"I think he's mistaken," Obama said. "I've indicated to him that, in fact, a strong, unified Europe working with a strong, outward-looking Russia, that's the right recipe. So far, he has not been entirely persuaded."

Obama was speaking at the end of a visit to Europe, which he said is facing a "defining moment" as it deals with the migrant crisis and threat of Islamist terrorism, and needs to show greater unity.

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