Putin hints at becoming prime minister again in 2024

Saul Bowman
May 27, 2018

Putin made the comment in a news conference with French President Emmanuel Macron, offering some support for the French leader's plan for negotiating a broader agreement with Tehran to cover Iran's ballistics program and its activities in the Middle East.

The Iran deal was the first time Russia, France, Germany and others had agreed on a major global issue since relations between Russia and the West chilled over Moscow's annexation of Crimea in 2014.

Putin also said Russian Federation was ready for dialogue with the United States, but that a proposed summit with U.S. President Donald Trump was not working out for now and was beset by problems.

France has taken the lead in Europe in trying to find a political settlement to the devastating Syrian civil war and the issue is likely to figure prominently, along with Iran, in the talks in St Petersburg.

"That was not desirable", Macron said, adding that the embassy move played a part in sparking fatal clashes between Palestinian protesters and Israeli security forces.

"When points of view coincide, it can only mean that the countries edge at least a bit closer to each other", Putin's foreign affairs adviser, Yuri Ushakov, said earlier this month.

On Friday, the French couple will pay homage to the victims of the brutal German 1941-44 siege of St. Petersburg, then known as Leningrad - something very personal for Putin whose parents suffered in the battle.

Bilateral relations "are developing despite all the current complications".

Putin had met with Macron's rival, Marine Le Pen, in Moscow during the presidential race.

Macron, who had travelled to Washington in an unsuccessful bid to persuade Trump to keep faith with the Iran deal, did not explicitly criticise the USA leader.

"Certainly we can discuss Iran's ballistic missiles".

The Kremlin leader said that a combination of sanctions, trade barriers and a lack of trust was hugely risky.

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