Putin, in the first major remarks from a Russian leader since a coalition of Western countries began air strikes in Libya, said that Muammar Gaddafi’s government fell short of democracy but added that did not justify military intervention.
“The resolution is defective and flawed,” Putin told workers at a Russian ballistic missile factory. “It allows everything. It resembles medieval calls for crusades.”
Update: Russian President Dmitry Medvedev slams Putin for invoking the Crusades:
Medvedev swiftly rejected the comments in a rare moment of discord.
“Under no circumstances is it acceptable to use expressions which essentially lead to a clash of civilizations, such as ‘crusade’ and so on,” Medvedev was quoted as saying. “It is unacceptable. Otherwise, everything may end up much worse compared to what’s going on now. Everyone should remember that.”
Medvedev added that Russia didn’t veto the UN resolution because Russia essentially agrees with it.