Greece's Tsipras and Putin Pledge Cooperation

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras makes a sign to a colleague as he sits for the first time in the Prime Minister's seat in the parliament before a swearing in ceremony for Greece's new lawmakers in the Greek parliament in Athens on Feb. 5, 2015.

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras discussed boosting cooperation with Russia on a variety of fronts including energy and the economy during a phone call with Russian President Vladimir Putin, the Greek leader's office said Thursday.

"The Russian president and the prime minister emphasized the need for substantial improvement of the cooperation between Greece and Russia — countries with deep and historic ties — especially in the sectors of economy, energy, tourism, culture and transport," a statement from Tsipras' office said.

Putin has invited Tsipras to visit Moscow on May 9, the statement said, adding that the two leaders also discussed safeguarding peace and stability in Ukraine.

Tsipras, whose new left-wing government ruffled feathers among European partners with comments that suggested Greece wanted to undermine EU policy on Russia, has ruled out seeking aid from Russia.

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