President Obama and President Medvedev spoke by phone this morning to discuss a wide range of issues in U.S.-Russia relations. The two presidents discussed developments in the Middle East at length, with a particular focus on Libya. President Obama expressed his appreciation for Russia’s support for the implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1973 and subsequent positive statements that President Medvedev has made regarding the resolution’s mandate.
The two presidents also discussed the new momentum in Russia’s progress towards joining the World Trade Organization this year. President Obama affirmed his support for Russia’s accession into the WTO this year and also affirmed his commitment to work with the U.S. Congress to terminate the application of Jackson-Vanik to Russia and establish Permanent Normalized Trade Relations with Russia. The two presidents also discussed recent progress made in developing deeper cooperation on missile defense. President Obama affirmed why the United States believes that cooperation with Russia on missile defense could enhance the security of the United States, Russia, our allies, and our partners. The two presidents agreed to meet on the sidelines of the G-8 summit in Deauville, France at the end of May.