President Obama visited Russia for the first time since being elected. He delivered a keynote speech today at the New Economic School in Moscow to the graduating class. He urged Russia to move on from the cold war and become one of America’s allies.
“It is difficult to forge a lasting partnership between former adversaries, but I believe on the fundamental issues that will shape this century, Americans and Russians share common interests that form a basis for cooperation.”
Obama met with Russian president, Dmitry Medvedev and they made agreements on a number of topics including reduction of nuclear weapons by both countries. He also met with former president and current Prime Minister, Vladimir Putin. After his meeting with Putin, Obama admitted that they did not see eye to eye on some topics.
“I found him to be tough, smart, shrewd, very unsentimental, very pragmatic. And on areas where we disagree, like Georgia, I don’t anticipate a meeting of the minds anytime soon.”
Putin was more optimistic however saying:
“With you we link all our hopes for the furtherance of relations between our two countries.”
The President leaves for Italy tomorrow for a meeting with world leaders at a G-8 Summit in Italy. Following that he’ll be off to Ghana to deliver what White House officials call a “major foreign policy speech.”