Putin praises G20's 'constructive atmosphere'

Putin praises G20's 'constructive atmosphere'
Australia's Prime Minister Tony Abbott (L) offically welcomes Russia's President Vladimir Putin (R) to the G20 Leaders' Summit on the opening day in Brisbane.

BRISBANE, Australia - Russia president Vladimir Putin on Sunday praised the "constructive atmosphere" at the G20 summit and said there was a "good chance of a resolution" to the Ukraine crisis, despite coming under intense pressure from Western leaders.

Speaking at a press conference broadcast on Russian television, Putin said "some of our views do not coincide, but the discussions were complete, constructive and very helpful".

Putin also thanked Australia's prime minister Tony Abbott for hosting the event in Brisbane.

He added that bilateral talks had focused on the crisis in Ukraine and the sanctions imposed by the West on Moscow.

Putin called the discussions "frank, significant and... useful". He said Moscow was able to "better communicate with our colleagues" the reasons behind Russia's actions.

"I think it will help us," he said.

And he said there was "a good chance of resolution" in the conflict.

On the topic of sanctions put in place against Moscow, Putin said: "The sanctions are harmful to everyone, this is what has been generally accepted." Despite Putin's warm words, the tensions at the summit were noticeable where relations between Russia and the West dominated the summit.

The Russian leader also criticised Kiev's plans to put in place an economic blockade against the separatist regions in east Ukraine.

"I think it is a big mistake because they are removing their grip on these territories," said the Russian president.

Putin added that Moscow would discuss the blockade with Ukraine president Petro Poroshenko.

Following the press conference jetted out of Australia before the summit's final communique.

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