WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Monday there was no indication that Russia wanted a positive relationship with the United States, saying it had chosen to be a strategic competitor.
"At this time ... I do not see any indication that Mr. Putin would want a positive relationship with us. That is not to say we can't get there as we look for common ground," Mattis told a House Armed Services Committee hearing, referring to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
"But at this point, he has chosen to be competitive, a strategic competitor with us and we will have to deal with that as we see it," he added.
(Reporting by Idrees Ali and Mike Stone; Editing by Peter Cooney)