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Trump stresses importance of anti-terror cooperation between US and Russia

December 18, 2017, 5:02 UTC+3

US President told his Russian counterpart that he and the entire United States intelligence community were pleased to have helped save so many lives

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WASHINGTON, December 18. /TASS/. US President Donald Trump, who had a telephone conversation with his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, on Sunday, stressed the importance of the two countries’ intelligence services to defeat terrorist, the White House said in a press statement.

"President Trump stressed the importance of intelligence cooperation to defeat terrorists wherever they may be," the White House said.

The Russian president called his US counterpart to thank "for the advanced warning the United States intelligence agencies provided to Russia concerning a major terror plot in Saint Petersburg, Russia," the statement said. "President Trump appreciated the call and told President Putin that he and the entire United States intelligence community were pleased to have helped save so many lives."

"Both leaders agreed that this serves as an example of the positive things that can occur when our countries work together," it added.

According to the White House, Putin "extended his thanks and congratulations to Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Director Mike Pompeo and the CIA." Later, Trump Pompeo to congratulate him, "his very talented people, and the entire intelligence community on a job well done!"

The CIA press service was unavailable for comment.

The Kremlin press service said earlier on Sunday that President Putin had called the US leader to thank him for CIA information that helped arrest terrorist who had plotted bomb attacks in St. Petersburg’s Kazan Cathedral and in other crowded places in Russia’s second largest city.

"The Russian president thanked his US counterpart for information shared by the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) that helped trace, expose and detain a group of terrorists who had plotted explosions in St. Petersburg’s Kazan Cathedral and in other crowded places in that city," the press service said, adding that the conversation was initiated by the Russian side.

According to the Russian president, the CIA information was enough to expose and detain the criminals. Putin asked Trump to convey thanks to the CIS director and intelligence officers who had obtained this information.

The Russian leader reassured the US president that "Russian security services, should they have information about possible terrorist threats to the United States and its citizens, will swiftly and unconditionally share it with the US colleagues via partner channels," the press service stressed.

The press office of Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) reported earlier that seven members of a terrorist cell had been detained for plotting terror attacks. They planned to commit a series of murders and improvised bomb attacks in crowded places in St. Petersburg on December 16. One of those detained confessed to court he had planned a bomb attack in the city’s landmark Kazan Cathedral.

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