Obama: Putin 'no chess master'

US President Barack Obama speaks during a press conference at the White House in Washington, DC, on December 19, 2014President Barack Obama hit back at foreign policy critics in an interview aired Sunday, brushing off claims he had been naively outmaneuvered by Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin over the Ukraine crisis. Instead, Putin’s policies and the stringent economic sanctions they had prompted against Russia by the West had led to a “huge economic contraction” Obama said. “Right now, he’s presiding over the collapse of his currency, a major financial crisis and a huge economic contraction,” Obama told CNN’s “State of the Union” program.

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