Yesterday the Kremlin’s English website posted some of President Vladimir Putin’s holiday greetings to various world leaders. Germany and China, it seems, are regarded with much greater affection than Georgia. Germany
In his address to German President Horst Koehler, Putin wrote that much has been done in 2006 to strengthen the fruitful cooperation between Russia and Germany, two countries that are kept together by relations of strategic partnership and a common approach to crucial international events. Vladimir Putin wrote to German Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel that Russian-German relations of strategic partnership and the friendly and confident relations between the leaders of the two states have been developing consistently. He expressed the hope that 2007, when Germany will hold the rotating presidency of the G8 and the European Union, will see new initiatives and projects aimed at ensuring the prosperity of the two countries, and that multifaceted bilateral cooperation will grow dynamically, facilitating the solution of pressing problems on the European and global agendas.
Mr Putin wrote to Chinese President Hu Jintao that Russia and China have attained impressive results in promoting mutually beneficial political, economic and cultural cooperation in 2006, and have considerably expanded their interaction in global affairs. The sides have celebrated the 10th anniversary of a policy of equality, confident partnership and strategic cooperation, as well as five years of the Treaty of Good-Neighborliness, Friendship and Cooperation. The Year of Russia in China has had a beneficial effect on the development of bilateral relations, and the Year of China in Russia (2007) will give Russians a chance to learn more about the thousand-year history of China and the culture and traditions of the friendly Chinese people, and will promote bilateral relations and give a powerful impetus to more extensive use of the two countries’ potential for strategic partnership.
In his address to Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili, President Putin wished the Georgian people peace and prosperity.