Vladimir Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov in his interview to The Associated Press said one way Donald Trump could help build confidence with Russia after he becomes president would be to persuade NATO to slow down its expansion or withdraw its forces from Russia's borders.
But unfortunately, he said, Russia now sees "NATO's muscles ... getting bigger and bigger and closer and closer to Russian borders."
Peskov, who is considered one of Putin's closest aides, called NATO "an instrument of confrontation."
When its forces are being enlarged and deploying closer and closer to Russia's borders, he said, "we do not feel ourselves safe."
"Of course, we have to take measures to counter," Peskov said.
As "confidence-building measures" to reduce U.S.-Russia tensions in a Trump presidency "let's say slow down or withdrawal of NATO's military potential from our borders potentially would ease this situation," he said.
It's highly unusual for Peskov to travel abroad separately from Putin, but he is chairman of the board of the Russian Chess Federation and came to New York to attend Friday's opening of the world championship match between Russia's Sergei Karyakin and Norway's Magnus Carlsen. The organizers invited Trump to attend but he did not show up.
As we reported earlier, Former US Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul said that he was denied entry to Russia.