Russian President Vladimir Putin warned Friday that the USA exit from the Iranian nuclear deal could trigger risky instability and raise new threats for Israel if Tehran resumes a full-fledged nuclear program.
"I do believe that we should never be weak with President Putin".
Putin and French President Emmanuel Macron launched a joint defence of the Iranian nuclear deal on Monday but expressed differences on how to move forward as Trump weighs up whether to scrap it.
This issue is now seen by some analysts and diplomats as an area where France and its European partners Germany and Britain can find common ground with the Kremlin and - perhaps - a means to improve badly strained ties.
"But we can not make preserving the Iranian nuclear deal dependent on these three parameters because if we do, it means that we too are withdrawing from the accord because the deal that exists foresees no additional conditions".
Macron must confirm "that France will never accept the increased repression in Russian Federation as "the new normal", the rights watchdog said in a statement.
"The latest decisions of the Congress had made our relations more stable and predictable not only in the medium period but in the distant future", he said.
The official spoke on the condition of anonymity to avoid overshadowing Trump's comments Thursday.
In the meeting with editors, Putin declined to assess relations between Trump and North Korea's Kim Jong Un, but said the United States should not try to take a hard line with the country.
On Friday, the French couple will pay homage to the victims of the brutal German 1941-44 siege of St. Petersburg, then known as Leningrad - something very personal for Putin whose parents suffered in the battle.
SPIEF, held annually in Russia's second largest city of St. Petersburg, is a major global platform for communication between business representatives and the discussion of crucial economic issues.
Putin had met with Macron's rival, Marine Le Pen, in Moscow during the presidential race.
Putin's comments in a meeting with top editors of worldwide news agencies underlined how Russia's once-high hopes for improved relations under Trump have eroded.
"Trump is an uncultured man, violent and brutal", Orlov added.
The Russian leader, who was recently sworn in for the fourth term, mentioned that former President Barack Obama's administration played a pivotal role in negotiating the Iran deal.