Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, who won a third presidential term on Sunday, is ready for cooperation with the new party one of the opposition candidates, Mikhail Prokhorov, plans to create.
Putin made the comments at a meeting on Monday with three of the four other candidates in the race: Prokhorov, Vladimir Zhirinovsky and Sergei Mironov.
“If you implement your plans for the creation of a party, we’ll have the basis for constructive dialogue,” Putin told Prokhorov at a meeting with Russian presidential candidates.
Prokhorov, a billionaire independent candidate, finished third in Russia’s presidential race , according to preliminary results. He announced plans on Sunday to create a “political party to struggle for power” and run for president once again.
During the meeting, Prokhorov and Putin agreed that Russia’s civic society lacks the social "elevators" that would allow politically active people to realize their potential.
Putin also reiterated that he is ready together with other presidential candidates to continue efforts to “remove the wall of misunderstanding between the public and government agencies.”
The prime minister said that the votes of those who did not vote him should be respected, “In my view, this election campaign was not as dirty as it was in previous elections. Our candidates and our teams conducted the campaign quite intelligently.”
“The vote percentages were higher than expected for some, lower for others. That does not matter. It matters that you have people behind you ready to vote for you. Lots of people. Anyway, each of you has many backers and we should all together treat the people with great respect,” Putin said.