France and Japan
MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Russian President Vladimir Putin expressed his hope that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and President Emmanuel Macron would pay visits to Russia in the coming year.
"In a congratulatory message addressed to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Vladimir Putin noted that he expected him to attend the opening ceremony of [Russia-Japan] cross years in Moscow in May next year and the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum," the statement said.
Putin noted with satisfaction that Russian-Japanese relations had recently intensified on a number of aspects, including political dialogue and inter-parliamentary ties.
"Our meeting at Versailles and phone consultations have helped to discuss many pressing issues relating to bilateral cooperation as well as key international problems in detail. I hope to continue the constructive dialogue and joint work with you in order to strengthen Russian-French ties. I am looking forward to your visit to Russia," Putin said, as quoted in the statement.
In his address to Pope Francis, the Russian president expressed the hope to continue constructive cooperation, "in order to protect peace, universal values and to strengthen intercivilizational and interreligios dialogue."
Putin also wished Pope Francis good health, prosperity and success in his noble work.
United States, Germany & United Kingdom
The Russian president has also expressed hope for improvement of the relations with the United States, United Kingdom, Germany and further cooperation with China, South Korea, and Turkey.
"In current difficult international situation a constructive Russian-US dialogue is especially in demand for strengthening of strategic stability in the world and finding optimal responses to challenges and threats," Putin said in the letter, as quoted by the Kremlin's press service.
Putin also expressed hope for the improvement of Russia-UK relations in the New-Year greetings to Queen Elizabeth II and UK Prime Minister Theresa May.
While congratulating Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Putin noted the progress in bilateral cooperation.
In an address to the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Putin expressed hope for "further joint work on strengthening bilateral cooperation in political, trade and economic, humanitarian and other areas, including efforts in ensuring stability and security in the Middle East."