Russian President Vladimir Putin “can be dangerous” and will always push other political leaders as far as he can, former US secretary of state Hillary Clinton told a German newspaper on Sunday.
“A man like Putin always goes to the limits. He always tries to find out how strong the others are” and then re-positions himself accordingly, she told Bild am Sonntag.
“His latest aggression in Ukraine must be answered with a joint reaction by the West,” she said in an interview published to coincide with the Berlin launch of her book “Hard Choices”.
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“I believe he can be dangerous,” she added, in response to questions about Moscow’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea peninsula and Russia’s tactics in the east of the ex-Soviet state.
Asked at her book presentation about what it was like to deal personally with the Russian strongman, she said he was “a tough customer, with a pretty thick skin”.
Still, she agreed with a quip from one journalist that he sounded “like a Russian cowboy”, to which she jokingly responded: “Yes, exactly — with or without shirt”.