US Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has accused the Russian president of creating chaos in Syria by bombing terrorists there.
Clinton made the comments during the first Democratic presidential debate of this year held on Tuesday in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The former secretary of state said that she’d had some success dealing with former Russian President Dmitry Medvedov.
But then Vladimir Putin again became president of Russia, she added, and “that did change the relationship.”
“We have to stand up to his bullying, and specifically in Syria, it is important — and I applaud the administration because they are engaged in talks right now with the Russians to make it clear that they’ve got to be part of the solution to try to end that bloody conflict,” she said.
“And, I think it’s important too that the United States make it very clear to Putin that it’s not acceptable for him to be in Syria creating more chaos, bombing people on behalf of Assad, and we can’t do that if we don’t take more of a leadership position, which is what I’m advocating,” Clinton stated.
Moscow began its military campaign against terrorists wreaking havoc in Syria on September 30 at a request from the government of President Bashar al-Assad.
Russia has carried out scores of airstrikes against Daesh (ISIL) terrorists in Syria, killing hundreds of militants.
Last week, Russia even fired 26 long-range cruise missiles from its warships in the Caspian Sea against ISIL positions in Syria.
The Pentagon announced on October 7 that the United States had adopted measures to ensure a safe distance from Russian fighter jets flying over Syria.
John McCain, the Republican chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, declared last week that Putin was “humiliating” the United States in Syria.
He added that Washington should "just leave" Syria "if all of your [US] actions are dictated by the risk of confrontation with Russia."
Syria has been gripped by a foreign-backed militancy since March 2011 aimed at toppling the Assad government. The violence has claimed the lives of more than 250,000 people so far.
The United States and its regional allies have been backing the militants since the beginning of the crisis.