ST. PETERSBURG, June 6. /TASS/. There is a need to turn the page in relations between Moscow and London because they are more important than the games intelligence agencies play, Russian President Vladimir Putin said at a meeting with the heads of the world’s leading news outlets on Thursday.
"We need to eventually turn the page about spies and assassination attempts," he said. When speaking about the case of former Russian military intelligence officer Sergei Skripal, convicted of spying, Putin said that Russia had not spied on the United Kingdom. "He was your agent and not ours, which means you were spying on us, and as for what happened to him later, it is hard for me to say, but we need to eventually leave it all behind," the Russian leader noted.
According to him, "global issues related to common economic, social and security interests are more important than the games intelligence agencies," he said.
The Russian president also mentioned his recent meeting with members of the British community, describing it as "very good." "We have $22 bln worth of British investment. These people want to feel secure, they would a positive trend in relations to emerge. We treat them as friends, whose interests must be protected regardless of the current political situation," Putin emphasized.
The Russian President said he would like to see UK Prime Minister Theresa May’s successor respect the interests of cooperation with Russia.
"It’s not up to us to decide, it’s up to the Brits and the British Establishment to decide about the layout of the parliament, which one of the candidates can offer the most attractive way to resolve the most acute problems of the international agenda, Brexit, domestic and economic policies. It is none of our business," he said at a meeting with CEOs of world news agencies when asked who he thinks may succeed Theresa May as UK prime minister.
"I wish a man heading the government reckon with the interests of 600 British companies operating in Russia," Putin stressed.