UK-Russia Relations Remain Frosty

Brown writes to congratulate Medvedev but offers no invite
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 4, 2008 10:20 AM CST
Dmitry Medvedev, the man Vladimir Putin hand-picked to be his successor, speaks to the media during his news conference in Moscow, early Monday, March 3, 2008. The election of Dmitry Medvedev as president...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – As Gordon Brown extended only the most cursory congratulations to Dmitry Medvedev yesterday, the frozen diplomatic relations between Russia and Britain seem unlikely to thaw, reports the Times of London. The UK prime minister sent a letter rather than making the usual phone call to a president-elect, and he pointedly declined to invite Medvedev to London, saying they'll meet at the next G8 summit.

Since the 2006 murder of the spy Alexander Litvinenko in London, the countries have expelled each other's diplomats, bickered over art exhibitions, and fought over alleged Russian intimidation of British cultural officials. Experts anticipate no change in the Kremlin's refusal to extradite Andrei Lugovoi, the main suspect in the Litvinenko case, under a Medvedev presidency.