Speaking on Russia's military operation in Syria, US President Barack Obama touched the Ukrainian issue. He said that a former head of Ukraine was a "corrupt ruler" and "stooge of Putin". An excerpt from the interview was published on the CBS web site.
"When I came into office - Ukraine was governed by a corrupt ruler who was a stooge of Mr. Putin", said Obama.
He also added that "Syria was Russia's only ally in the region. And today, rather than being able to count on their support and maintain the base they had in Syria, which they've had for a long time. Mr. Putin now is devoting - his own troops, his own military, just to barely hold together by a thread his sole ally."
Obama pointed out that "If you think that running your economy into the ground and having to send troops in, in order to prop up your only ally is leadership, then we've got a different definition of leadership."