The Iranian president left the violence at home for his first foreign trip since winning the disputed election. He went to Yekaterinburg in Russia – a day late because of the violence in Iran – to take part in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation. The Russian president Dmitry Medvedev became the first leader of a major power to greet him.
Ahmedinejad baited the United States for being bound up in economic crisis. “The international capitalist order is retreating,” he said. “It is totally obvious that the age of empires has ended, and it won’t come back.” He made no mention of the election, and Russia’s only official comment was that it was an internal Iranian matter. Iran is at the SCO as an observer, though in the past it has expressed interest in joining.