Dec 15, 2020 - World

Putin congratulates Biden on U.S. election win

Russia's President Vladimir Putin takes part in a social forum of the United Russia Party via video link from the Novo-Ogaryovo residence.

Russia's President Vladimir Putin during an teleconference at the Novo-Ogaryovo residence in Moscow. Photo: Alexei Nikolsky/Russian Presidential Press and Information Office/TASS via Getty Images

Russian President Vladimir Putin has sent a message of congratulations to President-elect Joe Biden, the Kremlin announced Tuesday.

Why it matters: Putin was one of the few world leaders to refrain from congratulating Biden for his election win. But after the Electoral College affirmed his election victory, the Kremlin released a statement saying Putin looked forward to having "interaction and contact with" Biden, per Russia's TASS news agency.

"In a telegram, Putin wished the President-elect every success and expressed confidence that Russia and the United States, which bear special responsibility for global security and stability, can, despite their differences, really contribute to solving many problems and challenges that the world is currently facing."

Of note: The Kremlin said last month that Putin would wait for an "official announcement" before commenting on the election or congratulating Biden.

  • President Trump has yet to concede despite the Electoral College vote and spent much of Monday night tweeting and retweeting baseless conspiracy theories on the election.

For the record: A bipartisan Senate intelligence report found Russia interfered in the 2016 election to help Trump.

  • FBI director Chris Wray testified in September that the bureau had seen "very active efforts by the Russians to influence our election in 2020," primarily to "denigrate" Biden.
  • Biden has promised a more adversarial relationship with Russia and with Putin himself, Axios' Dave Lawler notes.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.

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