Putin needs to go after the people who killed Russia's citizens

By Updated at 2015-11-22 10:07:03 +0000

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"He needs to go after the people who killed Russia's citizens," Obama said of Putin.

Speaking at the end of the ASEAN summit in Malaysia, U.S. President Obama also pressed Russian President Putin to align himself with the U.S.-led coalition, noting that the Islamic State (ISIS) has been accused of bringing down a Russian airliner last month, killing 224 people.

Obama said the U.S.-led coalition “will not relent” in the fight against the ISIS. He said the Islamic State "can't beat us on the battlefield so they try to terrorize us into being afraid. They're a bunch of killers with good social media. The world would not accept the extremists’ attacks on civilians in Paris and elsewhere as the new normal."

Despite Russia ramping up its air campaign in Syria against ISIS, Obama said Moscow has focused its attention on the rebel forces fighting Syrian President Bashar Assad, a Russian ally. He called on Russia to make a “strategic adjustment” and drop its support for Assad. Obama said violence in Syria will not be stopped as long as Assad is in office.

"It will not work to keep him in power," Obama said. "We can't stop the fighting."

French President Francois Hollande is scheduled to meet with Obama at the White House Tuesday to discuss ways to bolster the international fight against ISIS. Hollande will then meet with Putin in Moscow.


The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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