US

Joe Biden has sparked a war of words with the Kremlin after he called Vladimir Putin a “crazy SOB” at a fundraiser.

Speaking at an event in San Francisco, the president fired a barb at his Russian counterpart while discussing the effects of climate change.

“This is the last existential threat. It is climate,” Mr Biden told donors in California.

“We have a crazy SOB like that guy Putin and others and we always have to worry about nuclear conflict, but the existential threat to humanity is climate.”

Ukraine-Russia war latest

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said in response: “Has Mr Putin ever used one crude word to address you? This has never happened. Therefore, I think that such vocabulary debases America itself.”

He then called it a poor attempt to sound like a “Hollywood cowboy,” and added: “This is a disgrace for the country itself, I mean the United States.”

It’s not the first time Mr Biden has sworn at opponents, with the president caught on microphone calling a Fox News reporter a “stupid son of a bitch” during a White House press conference in January 2022.

The president has also, according to Sky’s US partner NBC News, called Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu an “asshole” on at least three occasions recently.

During the 2020 election, Mr Biden told a man he was “full of shit” in a row about gun control during a campaign stop in Detroit, Michigan, and later called him a “horse’s ass”.

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9:54

‘Putin is responsible for Navalny’s death’

After Mr Biden’s latest expletive in San Francisco, he turned his attention to Donald Trump over the former president comparing himself to Alexei Navalny, the Russian opposition leader who died at an Arctic penal colony last week.

“Some of the things that this fellow’s been saying, like he’s comparing himself to Navalny and saying that – because our country’s become a communist country, he was persecuted, just like Navalny was persecuted. I don’t know where the hell this comes from,” the president said.

“I mean, if I stood here 10, 15 years ago and said any of this, you’d all think I should be committed. It astounds me.”

Last week, the president blamed the “monster” Russian leader and “his thugs” for Mr Navalny’s death – which the Kremlin denies.

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