Joe Biden sent urgent message by Vladimir Putin as Russian leader breaks election silence
Last month, the Democrat beat Donald Trump in the US election and, while world leaders were quick to congratulate him, Russia remained silent. But now, following the electoral college confirmation of Mr Biden’s win, Mr Putin has sent a telegram to offer his best wishes.
Russia’s state news agency Tass said: “The President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin sent a congratulatory telegram to Joseph Biden on the occasion of the victory in the presidential elections of the United States of America.
“In the telegram, Putin wished the president-elect every success.”
The Kremlin statement quoted Mr Putin saying: “For my part, I am ready for interaction and contacts with you.”
Mr Putin “expressed confidence that Russia and the United States, bearing special responsibility for global security and stability, can, despite their differences, really contribute to solving many problems and challenges that the world is currently facing”.
Before the election, Mr Putin said he would work with any US leader but noted what he called Mr Biden’s “sharp anti-Russian rhetoric”.
Ahead of the election, Mr Biden characterised Russia as an “opponent” that poses the “biggest threat” to America’s security.
Back in 2016, Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election to undermine Democrat Hillary Clinton.
In 2018, Mr Trump said he held Mr Putin personally responsible for Russian interference in the election.
He said he made it clear to Mr Putin that Russian meddling had to stop.
Both Mr Trump and Mr Putin have a long history of complimenting each other.
Mr Putin has described the outgoing President as “a talented person” who “knows very well what his voters expect from him”.
Despite Mr Putin now congratulating Mr Biden, it appears relations between the two countries are still strained.
Over the weekend, the US Government was targeted by suspected Russian hackers in a cyber attack.
According to reports, the hack was so serious it led to a National Security Council meeting at the White House over the weekend.
The US Commerce Department confirmed on Sunday it has been a victim of a data breach.
John Ullyo, National Security Council spokesman, added: “The United States government is aware of these reports and we are taking all necessary steps to identify and remedy any possible issues related to this situation.”
One source said: “This is a much bigger story than one single agency.
“This is a huge cyber espionage campaign targeting the US government and its interests.”
A spokesman for the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency said: “We have been working closely with our agency partners regarding recently discovered activity on government networks.
“CISA is providing technical assistance to affected entities as they work to identify and mitigate any potential compromises.”
Last month, World War 3 fears were sparked again after a Russian warship chased off a US destroyer vessel that Moscow said was violating the Russian border in the Peter the Great Gulf.
The Russian Defence Ministry said the USS John S. McCain, which entered the Sea of Japan, violated the country’s territorial waters, “passing the maritime border by two kilometres”.
A statement from the ministry said crew aboard Admiral Vinogradov vessel warned the US ship it would use a “ramming manoeuvre” if it did not quickly leave Russia’s territorial waters.
But after Admiral Vinogradov changed its course, USS John S. McCain destroyer followed suit and returned to international waters.