ST. PETERSBURG, June 17. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin has said he is grateful to the 42nd US president, Bill Clinton, for assistance and respect.
"We had a very good relationship [with Bill Clinton]. I can even say that I am very grateful to him for certain moments that occurred in the early days of my career in big politics," Putin said at the full-scale meeting of the St. Petersburg International Economic forum. "On several occasions he made gestures of respect towards me personally and to Russia. I remember that and I am very grateful for that."
As for Hillary Clinton, Putin said he had never had a chance to contact her personally, because Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov had always been her opposite number. When asked about his own casually dropped remark about Hillary Clinton that may be a roughly translated as ‘The Devil’s wife is also a witch’ Putin agreed with a smile it was an off-hand joke and probably not the best one.
Putin agreed that Hillary Clinton surely might have her own vision of the future of Russian-US relations.
He also pointed out that the responsibility any senior post implied might cause great influence on people’s character and even their appearance.
"We proceed from the understanding that the sense of responsibility of the US head of state, the leader of a country a great deal depends on these days, will encourage any newly-elected president to cooperate with Russia and to build a safer world," Putin said.