MOSCOW — Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said on Monday he wanted his US counterpart Barack Obama to win re-election next year, fearing that the two men's efforts to improve ties may lose steam under a new administration.
"I can tell you directly -- I would like Barack Obama to be re-elected president of the United States maybe more than someone else," Medvedev said in an interview with the Financial Times whose full transcript was released by the Kremlin early Monday.
"If another person becomes US president then he may have another course," he said.
"We understand that there are representatives of a rather conservative wing there who are trying to achieve their political goals at the expense of inflaming passions in relation to Russia, among other things.
"But what use is criticising them? This is simply a way of achieving political goals."
Since being installed at the Kremlin by his mentor Vladimir Putin, known for his hawkish views, Medvedev has made improving ties with the United States a key plank of his foreign policies.
The "reset" in ties has yielded a key nuclear arms treaty, Russian support of a UN resolution on Libya and Medvedev's decision not to supply S-300 air defense missiles to Iran.
But asked whether he thought the "reset" in relations would last for a long time, Medvedev waxed philosophical. "Nothing lasts too long under the moon."