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Russia-US cooperation on North Korean, Iranian issues productive - Pentagon chief

January 11, 5:25 UTC+3 WASHINGTON

"We have our serious differences with Russia," Ash Carter said, adding that "it's not a question of alarm, it's a matter of strategic judgment."

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WASHINGTON, January 11. /TASS/. Outgoing US Defense Secretary Ash Carter acknowledged at a news briefing at the Pentagon that despite differences over Ukraine and Syria, Moscow and Washington have been productively cooperating in other areas.

"We have our serious differences with Russia," he said, adding that "it's not a question of alarm, it's a matter of strategic judgment." "We've had serious concerns about their activities in Ukraine… I think their activities in Syria have been backwards and counter-productive," Carter said. However, "we've worked productively with Russia with respect to North Korea and with respect to Iran," he added.

When asked to comment on Russia’s alleged hacks during the 2016 presidential campaign, he said that the US "approach to Russia is one that is both strong and balanced." "Strong in the sense that we're making investments specifically with an eye to being able to continue to check and deter Russia and also making investment in our alliance in NATO so that they can stand strong against Russian aggression," he said.

Earlier the US intelligence published a declassified report on supposed hacks, which claims that the Main Intelligence Directorate of the General Staff of Russia’s Armed Forces handed confidential information about the US Democratic Party over to Wikileaks, the DCLeaks.com website and a hacker nicknamed Guccifer 2.0. Moscow has repeatedly denied any role in cyberattacks.

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