Donald Trump seemed to offer more detail about his positions on Russia and China under his incoming administration.
Trump told The Journal any new developments between the US and China might hinge upon China's trade and currency practices, which the president-elect has characterized as unfair to the US.
On Russia, Trump told The Journal he would consider keeping in place new sanctions against Russia — which President Barack Obama announced in response to Russia's election-related cyberattacks against the Democratic Party. Trump said sanctions against the Kremlin could remain intact "for at least a period time" under his presidency. The new sanctions Obama outlined in December included the expulsion of 35 Russian diplomats from the US, who were promptly sent packing.
Trump suggested continued sanctions against Russia may not make sense under certain circumstances.
"If Russia is really helping us, why would anybody have sanctions if somebody’s doing some really great things?," the president-elect asked the newspaper.
It was unclear what Trump meant by "really great things." The president-elect has repeatedly exalted Russia during and after the election, and applauded Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The day after Obama announced the new sanctions against Russia, Trump praised Putin again, saying Putin's response to the sanctions — that Russia would not retaliate, in hopes of friendlier ties with the Trump administration — was a "great move."
"I always knew he was very smart," Trump said of Putin.
Trump's platitudes came against a backdrop of Republican and Democratic condemnation of Russia and Putin over the cyberattacks.
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