Trump extends condolences to Putin over plane crash and promises to improve relations with Russia

Trump extends condolences to Putin over plane crash and promises to improve relations with Russia

U.S. President Donald Trump offered his condolences to Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday for the plane crash outside Moscow that killed 71 people, the Kremlin and White House said.

The White House said Trump assured Putin that the United States is “standing by to assist Russian authorities in their investigation” into why a Russian airliner on a regional flight crashed Sunday, killing everyone on board.

Trump and Putin last spoke in December, when Putin called Trump to thank him for a CIA tip that was said to have helped thwart bombings in St. Petersburg.

Putin repeatedly has said he hopes Trump can follow through on his campaign promises to improve relations with Russia and thinks pressure from Trump’s opponents has gotten in the way.

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