The USA is ready to enter into "special relations" with Russia, Vladimir Zhirinovsky told RIA Novosti. The vice speaker of the State Duma, or the lower house of the Russian parliament, Zhirinovsky, is attending the international forum of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly in Washington. As Zhirinovsky put it, the "traffic light" in US-Russia relations is changing from red to green as the US is coming to realize Russia's vast potential. According to the vice speaker, the US has stopped regarding Russia as second best and now tends to attach more importance to it than to major NATO countries like Britain, Germany, France and Italy. On the whole, Russia is considered as standing on its own but gravitating towards NATO, the West and the USA, said Zhirinovsky. He added that many Russians and Americans find it hard to change their views because entire generations were brought up in an anti-American or anti-Russian atmosphere. "We need propaganda, we need more good information about the US in Russia and about Russia in the US," remarked the vice speaker, adding that "the public opinion will change in a couple of years and both countries will realize that they are very close and very much alike, that they have the same goals, that both of them are devoted to freedom and so on." In any case, people have stopped regarding Russia "as a source of evil, an enemy, a country that emanates danger" and the general atmosphere is much better.
Russian small missile ships - the Grad Sviyazhsk and the Great Ustyug - set off for a mission to the Mediterranean Sea