Russian President Dmitry Medvedev expressed hope on Friday that the appointment of Herman Van Rompuy as European Council President could boost Russia-EU ties.
Medvedev sent on Friday a message of congratulations to Van Rompuy and the EU's new foreign policy chief, Catherine Ashton, according to a Kremlin spokesman.
"I hope your activity on this job will help boost cooperation between Russia and the European Union," Medvedev said.
The Russian leader attended on Wednesday the EU-Russia summit in Stockholm, where agreement was reached on key issues of energy cooperation and security. However, the summit produced no breakthrough in signing a new comprehensive partnership pact to replace a treaty that expired last year.
"The EU-Russia summit in Stockholm showed that as natural partners and closest neighbors we can solve all current problems constructively. A new important step has been taken towards building a truly equal strategic partnership for the benefit of peoples of Greater Europe," Medvedev said.
European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso called the talks "one of the best meetings we have had."
Van Rompuy, Belgium's prime minister, was elected president of the European Council by the 27-nation bloc's leaders at a meeting on Thursday evening, while Britain's Baroness Catherine Ashton was elected foreign policy supremo.
MOSCOW, November 20 (RIA Novosti)
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The main event of the third day of the 11th meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club in Sochi was the closing session with President Vladimir Putin. The atmosphere was calm and open, despite the current political tensions and the Russia-West confrontation. The Russian president said that it corresponded to the spirit of the Valdai Club.