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MOSCOW, November 13 (RIA Novosti) – Moscow and Washington should develop relations, but not again “reset” them, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said.
“Now we need not to again reset everything and press the buttons Reset or Reload, but to develop ties,” Medvedev said in an interview with Finnish media prior to his Wednesday’s visit to Finland.
US President Barack Obama made the so-called “reset” of relations with Russia following the rocky bilateral ties under his predecessor, George W. Bush, a foreign policy priority when he took office four years ago.
Obama’s ambassador to Russia, Michael McFaul, said the second Obama administration will try to build on several gains under the “reset policy,” including strategic arms reductions and bilateral agreements on visas and adoptions.
“I can again say that the incumbent US president is a person whom we can deal with, he listens to arguments, can communicate and make decisions,” Medvedev said commenting on Obama's re-election.
“I am thankful to him [Obama] for the years when we worked together. I hope that during his next term he will stick to the same approaches,” Medvedev added.
Medvedev said the European missile defense shield remained a key problem in the Russian-US relations.
Russia and NATO agreed to cooperate on the so-called European missile defense system at the Lisbon summit in November 2010. NATO insists there should be two independent systems that exchange information, while Russia favors a joint system with full-scale interoperability.
At the same time, Medvedev said he was “satisfied” with the job done in the past years, mainly with the signing of the new START arms reduction deal between Russia and the United States, which came into force in February 2012.
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The current contract portfolio of Russian arms exporters is worth about $46 billion. Annual exports total $15 billion, and this will ensure uninterrupted deliveries for the next three years, even in the worst-case scenario. The list of the main buyers of Russian weapons is unlikely to change drastically.