Obama "disappointed" with Russia granting asylum to NSA leaker

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Associated Press

Posted on August 6, 2013 at 11:30 PM

BURBANK, Calif. (AP) — President Barack Obama is expressing concerns about relations with Russia.

The president told late night host Jay Leno during an interview on NBC's "The Tonight Show" that he's "disappointed" that Russia granted temporary asylum to National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden.

Obama says Moscow's decision demonstrates "underlying challenges" in relations. He also says Russian leaders sometimes "slip back into Cold War thinking and a Cold War mentality."

The president says he'll be attending an international summit in St. Petersburg in September. But he doesn't say if he plans to attend meetings in Moscow with Russian leader Vladimir Putin.

Asked about a new Russian law that bans gay activism, Obama tells Leno he has "no patience" for countries that treat gays in ways that are intimidating or harmful. Russia has said it will enforce the law when it hosts the 2014 Winter Olympics. The president says Putin and Russia have "a big stake in making sure the Olympics work."

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