WASHINGTON, March 7 (Itar-Tass) —— Vladimir Putin was an obvious winner in the March 4 presidential election in Russia, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said.
She confirmed that the United States is ready to work with President-elect Putin after he has been sworn in and has taken office.
Clinton said the U.S. would also seek to expand cooperation with Russia on a number of complex issues.
The United States earlier congratulated the Russian people on the completion of the presidential elections, and looks forward to working with the President-elect after the results are certified and he is sworn in.
The United States urged the Russian government “to conduct an independent, credible investigation of all reported electoral violations. As underscored in the OSCE report, we also note the new steps that the Central Election Commission took to increase transparency of the voting process since the parliamentary elections last December. We urge Russian authorities to build on these steps to ensure that the procedures for future elections will be more transparent,” the Department of State said.
The United States is “encouraged to see so many Russian citizens voting, monitoring voting in their local precincts, exercising their constitutional right to free assembly, and expressing their views peacefully about the political and electoral processes” it said.
The Department of State recognised the Russian government's efforts to reform the political system, including the reintroduction of direct elections for governors, the simplification of party registration procedures, and the reduction in the numbers of signatures needed to register presidential candidates.
Clinton recalled that she had a telephone conversation with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and she would meet him in person at the U.N. Headquarters on March 12.
The Russian Foreign Ministry has announced that Lavrov is to hold a number of important bilateral meetings on the sidelines of the U.N. Security Council meeting in New York on March 12. The discussions will focus, among other things, on the situation in Syria.