On May 14, us Secretary of state Mike Pompeo held talks in Sochi with Russian President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov
Less than ten days
Mike Pompeo’s visit to Russia turned out to be more compressed than originally planned. Us Secretary of state canceled the trip to Moscow, leaving only Sochi in his work schedule. Here he was waiting for a difficult day. First, the talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, which lasted more than three hours. This is despite the fact that recently in Rovaniemi in Finland they have already met. Truth. then, on May 6, they managed to talk only about an hour.
Lavrov met the American guest in the sanatorium “Rus”. Initially, it was planned that the press conference following the talks would take place after Pompeo’s meeting with Vladimir Putin, but the Russian President was delayed due to important military meetings in Akhtubinsk. In order not to waste time, the Russian Foreign Minister and us Secretary of state went to journalists before heading to the residence of the “Bocharov stream”.
From the press conference Lavrov and Pompeo it became clear why the negotiations lasted so long. The meeting covered a wide range of topics. Russia and the United States traditionally have something to argue about, and in today’s reality, the list of issues of interest to both sides is especially long. From Russian-American relations to the situation in Ukraine. The Iranian nuclear program, the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, arms control, the political crisis in Venezuela are only the most important points.
The US remains concerned about the situation with the so-called Russian interference in our elections. According to Pompeo, if that was in 2016 and again in 2020, “the relationship will become worse.” One can only be amazed in a good sense of exposure Lavrov, who the third year has to repeat the same thing: imagine the facts, and then talk “grown-up”.
At the same time, Moscow has its own claims to Washington. Lavrov gave Pompeo an unofficial Memorandum, which lists examples of U.S. interference in the Internal Affairs of Russia. A special place among them is the financing of the promotion of democracy in Russia prescribed in the law on support of freedom in Ukraine. The document States that the Secretary of the state is instructed to deal with this, working both directly and with Russian government organizations. For these purposes, according to Lavrov, the American Congress allocates $ 20 million annually. Our Western “partners” have amazing logic. For some reason, freedom in Ukraine depends on democracy in Russia.Friendly environment
The parties also paid special attention to those areas where the two countries need to establish more productive cooperation. First of all, it concerns the business and humanitarian sphere. The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Russia has reminded that Moscow supports the establishment of the business group for the development of economic cooperation and the convening of the Expert Council, which would deal with the strategy of development of relations between the two countries. Both items were approved by Putin and trump in July 2018 at a meeting in Helsinki, but the case has not moved. RBC, citing a source familiar with the negotiations, notes that the main reasons for two – “inappropriate political background in the United States” and the arrest in Moscow of the head of the investment Fund Baring Vostok Michael Kalvi. By the way, Pompeo said that he discussed this topic at the talks with Lavrov.
It is also noted that the meeting was held in a more friendly atmosphere than expected. Fears were associated with the statements of us Secretary of state on the eve of his visit to Sochi. So, in an interview with CNBC, he called “nonsense” statements that we President Donald Trump is not enough “hard” in relation to Russia. He singled out the differences between the two countries on Venezuela, calling the political crisis in the Bolivarian Republic “a difficult topic”.
The assistant to the President of Russia Yury Ushakov told journalists about the hour and a half talks between Vladimir Putin and Mike Pompeo. According to him, the parties mainly discussed issues of international politics (Syria, Venezuela, North Korea), as well as arms control. The Russian leader made it clear that Moscow is committed to dialogue on all aspects of this problem, including treaties on the reduction of offensive arms (start) and on the reduction of intermediate-range missiles (INF).
However, all this looks nothing more than a Declaration of their own positions, which the parties already know very well. Perhaps that is why Yuri Ushakov said that some “breakthrough did not happen.” The conversation was substantive, but without any significant results that could have a significant impact on Russian-American relations. The main thing is that both countries are ready to “restore channels of communication” to normalize these relations in the future.
The presidential aide also said that Putin and Pompeo briefly touched on the topic of American sanctions against Russia. The General meaning of the Kremlin’s position remains unchanged: it is impossible to impose restrictive measures against our country, and then ask us to do something beneficial for the US in the international arena. It also became known that the President of Russia and us Secretary of state did not discuss Ukraine, Venezuela and the Baring Vostok case. Later, Pompeo himself positively assessed the past meetings with Lavrov and Putin. He noted that their main result was a “step forward” in the relations between the two countries. “The US and Russia have already demonstrated the possibility of joint cooperation on key issues in the past. We call on Russia to work with us to change the trajectories of relations for the benefit of the peoples of both countries,” us Secretary of state wrote on Twitter.
Putin and trump meeting in Osaka in question
While Donald Trump says that he is ready to meet with Vladimir Putin at the G20 summit in Japanese Osaka, the Russian Foreign Ministry noted that there was no official proposal in this regard. However, according to Sergey Lavrov, if such a request is received, the answer will be positive.
However, whether the meeting will take place is unclear. Although Pompeo’s visit to Sochi is perceived by many as a preparation for a Russian-American summit, not everyone likes the potential normalization of relations with Moscow in the States themselves. Trump was attacked after the last meeting with Putin, and on the eve of a new election campaign opponents of the White, the house has not disappeared. The publication of the report of special Prosecutor Robert Mueller visibly inspired the American leader, but he still has to look around in search of another catch.