Vladimir Putin sends new year greetings to Donald Trump

Valery Sharufulin  TASS

Valery Sharufulin TASS

Russian President Vladimir Putin told his USA counterpart Donald Trump in a New Year's letter on Sunday that Moscow was ready for dialogue on a "wide-ranging agenda", the Kremlin said following a series of failed attempts to hold a new summit.

Mr Trump cancelled a formal meeting with Mr Putin scheduled for December 1 at the G20 summit in Buenos Aires, tweeting "it would be best for all parties" given Russia's seizure days earlier of three Ukrainian naval vessels.

Trump and Putin failed to hold a full-fledged meeting in Paris on the sidelines of the 100-year commemoration of the World War I armistice in November.

In messages to other leaders, Putin discussed relations between the two countries, including his message to Assad.

Olivia Newton-John health claims dismissed
Iconic Australian singer Olivia-Newton John was reported to only have "weeks to live" on Wednesday. "A sick rumour", she said. The cancer's further spread to the bones in her back in 2017 forced the cancellation of a North American tour.

The team of Russian President Vladimir Putin and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu won 14-10 in a Night Hockey League match played on Moscow's Red Square on Saturday. Washington's announcement of a pull out from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty did not receive a warm welcome from Moscow.

The Year of China-Russia Local Cooperation and Exchange programme proceeded smoothly in 2018, and the popular support for friendship from generation to generation between the two peoples has been further consolidated, the Chinese President said.

In his message to May, Putin wished the British people "wellbeing and prosperity" in 2019. The decision from Trump sparked outrage from several high-ranking military officers, as well as the resignation of Trump's Secretary of Defense, James Mattis.

Putin also sent letters to former-President Barack Obama when he was in office, including a message delivered on Independence Day in 2016.

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