'Barack, relax': Medvedev tells Obama after nuclear deal
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev hailed his US counterpart Barack Obama as a man who keeps his promises, telling him to enjoy a rest after pushing through ratification of a historic nuclear pact.
Medvedev spoke as Russia's parliament Friday was to give initial approval after the US Senate ratified the weapons reduction treaty, and a triumphant US leader went to Hawaii for his annual Christmas and New Year holiday.
"Barack, relax!" Medvedev said he told Obama during a phone conversation late Thursday.
"He is a man who fulfils his promises. I wish my colleague a good rest, he did a quality job," the Kremlin chief said in a live end-of-year television interview.
Earlier this week the US Senate ratified the nuclear arms control treaty with Russia, handing Obama a major political victory after a months-long battle.
The treaty is now awaiting ratification in Russia where members of parliaments expressed concern on non-binding amendments added by the US Senate to the text of the agreement and warned that final ratification would drag on into next year.
Medvedev did not comment on the amendments, instead hailing the treaty as one of the country's top five events of this year along with the 65th anniversary of the defeat of Nazi Germany by the Soviet Union in WWII.
"This year was marked by a very serious event," Medvedev said. "Americans and us have managed to sign a most important treaty."
"I am very glad that we are moving along the path of ratification of this document."
© 2010 AFP