Russia's and the United States' Middle East ambitions may cause tensions and discords, William Cohen, the ex-U.S. secretary of defense, opined in a RIA Novosti interview on Saturday. Mr. Cohen is taking part in the Russian-American meeting in Veliky Novgorod, which is part of the Leaders project.
Mr. Cohen described current relations between the two countries as relatively positive.
Certain forces in the United State believe Russia may reemerge as a less democratic country, according to Mr. Cohen.
The ex-Pentagon chief said there were certain tensions and differences in the two countries' relations, and certain mistrust nurtured by Russia's as well as the U.S.' ambitions.
The Middle East problem and the U.S.' role in the region were discussed at the Veliky Novgorod meeting today.
Mr. Cohen found it difficult to answer the questions whether the U.S. policy in the Middle East would have a positive effect on all the Persian Gulf countries and whether it would affect Russia.
Mr. Cohen added that Russian-American meetings like the current one had a huge intellectual potential and could help settle bilateral problems.