Jen Psaki slams Trump for defending Putin’s invasion of parts of Ukraine territory

White House press secretary Jen Psaki criticised Donald Trump for defending Vladimir Putin’s invasion of parts of Ukraine and for calling the Russian president’s move “genius” and “smart”.

“As a matter of policy, we try not to take advice from anyone who praises President Putin and his military strategy, which I believe is what happened there,” she said, while responding to a question about Mr Trump’s comments on the ongoing issue of tensions with Russia over its military buildup near Ukraine.

On Tuesday, Putin recognised Ukraine’s entire Donbass region as independent countries, and announced that Russian forces would move to secure their sovereignty. The areas are largely controlled by two separatist governments, but some of the territory is still held by Ukraine’s government.

The development led to US president Joe Biden announcing a new range of sanctions targeting Russian oligarchs and financial institutions, while vowing that his administration would work with Germany to kill the Nord Stream 2 pipeline project.

During an interview with a conservative radio show on Tuesday, former president Donald Trump was asked: “This White House is stating that this is an ‘invasion’. That’s a strong word. What went wrong here? What has the current occupant of the Oval Office done that he could have done differently?”

Mr Trump responded to hosts Clay Travis and Buck Sexton: “What went wrong was a rigged election and what went wrong is a candidate that…

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