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Putin: US using dollar as argument in political disputes

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Russian President Vladimir Putin attends the open session meeting of the 10th BRICS summit (acronym for the grouping of the world

Russia accuses the US of politicizing the dollar and undermining the global trust in its currency by imposing restrictions on settlements in dollars.

At a news conference on Friday after a summit of the leaders of the BRICS group –Brazil, Russia, India, China and south Africa- in South Africa, Russian President Vladimir Putin underlined that Washington has undermined trust in its currency by using it as an argument in political disputes.

"Russia is not rejecting the dollar. The dollar is the universal reserve currency, the Euro can more or less claim that but not to the fullest extent. That is why we are aware of what the dollar represents," he said.

He made the remarks amid reports that Russia has ditched its holdings of US Treasuries in the past months amid further deterioration of relations between the US and Russia.

The Russian president also referred to the financial and economic sanctions imposed on his country by the West over Moscow’s annexation of Crimea and its alleged role in the Ukrainian crisis and said Russia should minimize risks related to sanctions and ‘unlawful restrictions.’

"We must minimize the risks. We see what is happening with these sanctions, with essentially illegal limitations. We take these risks into account and make an effort to minimize them."

Washington has stepped up the sanctions to punish Moscow for what it calls meddling in the US election, an accusation vehemently denied by Russia. 

Reports say with nearly $460 billion in state reserves, the Russian central bank has been increasing the share of gold and the Chinese yuan in its coffers amid risks of more sanctions that could target Russia's ability to trade globally.

Putin also said he has invited his American counterpart Donald Trump to Moscow for talks on a range of issues but that all conditions needed to be right for such a meeting to take place.

"I am ready to go to Washington. I repeat once again, if the right conditions for work are created," Putin told re

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