* Putin hopes for positive impact on ties with U.S.
* Foreign minister wants ties on equal footing
* PM glad president does not see Russia as main foe
MOSCOW, Nov 7 Russian President Vladimir Putin
on Wednesday welcomed U.S. President Barack Obama's re-election
and said he hoped it would have a positive impact on relations
with the United States.
Despite Obama's call for a "reset" in ties with Russia,
relations have been strained by differences over issues ranging
from missile defence to human rights and the conflict in Syria.
But Moscow had been wary of Republican Mitt Romney's campaign
remark that Russia was the United States' top geopolitical foe.
"Overall the Kremlin welcomes the news of Barack Obama's
victory in the elections," Putin's spokesman, Dmitry Peskov,
told Interfax news agency.
"We express hope that the positive beginnings in bilateral
relations and in international cooperation between Russian and
the United States, in the interest of international security,
will develop and improve."
Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, who was Russia's president
for much of Obama's current term, made clear he was glad that he
had defeated Romney.
"For us, he (Obama) is an understandable and predictable
partner. That is the most important thing in politics," Medvedev
was quoted as saying by Russian news agencies during a visit to
"I am happy that the president of a very big, very
influential state is not a man who considers Russia to be its
enemy number one. That is funny. It's some kind of paranoia."
Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Russia was open to
cooperating with Obama's new administration but underlined that
it expects its former Cold War enemy to deal with it as an equal
"We will continue to work with this administration," Lavrov
was quoted as saying by RIA news agency in an interview with the
Moskovskiye Novosti newspaper. "We are ready, on the basis of
mutual equality, mutual profit and mutual respect ... to go as
far as the U.S. administration is willing to go."