A public clash between Russia’s leaders over Libya has revealed cracks in the world’s most prominent political duo.
President Dmitry Medvedev appeared to criticise his prime minister after Vladimir Putin described the Western military action as a medieval crusade.
“There are different comments regarding what is happening but I believe we should be extremely careful in our assessments,” said Medvedev. “In no way is it acceptable to use expressions that in essence lead to a clash of civilisations, such as crusades and so forth. Otherwise things can end considerably worse than what’s happening today.”
Putin’s remarks came during a visit to a Russian military base. They’re in line with his much tougher stance on the UN resolution which he wanted Russia to veto.
“In general it reminds me of a medieval crusade when someone rallied others to go and liberate something,” Vladimir Putin told workers.
This sharp difference between the two comes ahead of next year’s presidential elections in which Putin is expected to stand once more.