In his first public comments since the US announced its decision on missile defence on Thursday, Mr Putin said he now expected the US to back a bid by Russia,Belarusand Kazakhstan to join the World Trade Organisation.
“I expect that after this correct and brave decision, others will follow,” Mr Putin said in a speech in the Black Searesortof Sochi. The measures should include “the complete removal of all restrictions on the transfer of hightechnologyto Russia and activity to widen the membership of the World Trade Organisation to [include] Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus”, he said.
His speech is likely to add to fears in the US that President Barack Obama’s concession on the missile defence shield – a programme Moscow fiercely opposed – is likely to embolden the Kremlin to make further demands.
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