Vladimir Putin congratulates Joe Biden after Electoral College win

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during an interview in Paris, France, on May 29, 2017.

Just hours after the Electoral College elected Joe Biden as the next president, formalizing the former Democratic vice president’s win in the Nov. 3 election, Russia’s leader Vladimir Putin finally acknowledged Biden’s victory, saying he “wished the president-elect every success” and was “ready for interaction and contact.”

The Kremlin, which has decried what it’s called Biden’s “sharp anti-Russian rhetoric” but praised the president-elect’s comments on arms control, previously said it preferred to wait until the election results were official before congratulating a winner. 

Putin was one of the last world leaders who had not acknowledged Biden’s victory. President Donald Trump is still refusing to concede the election.

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