Friday, April 14, 2017
So Much For Trump Being Owned By The Russians
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told Russian President Vladimir Putin “the current state of U.S.-Russia relations is at a low point” at a two-hour meeting in Moscow Wednesday.
The pronouncement was highlighted by the Russian’s decision to veto a U.S. backed UN Security Council resolution condemning the Assad regime for last week’s chemical weapon attack.
“There is a low level of trust between our two countries. The world’s two foremost nuclear powers cannot have this kind of relationship,” Tillerson said in a news conference with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.
Tillerson stated the issue of Syria was discussed in his meetings with both Lavrov and Putin.
Russia called the United States cruise missile strike against a Syria air base “a disgraceful act” and a “significant blow” to U.S./Russian relations last week.
Moscow vowed at the time that further military strikes against the Assad regime by the United States would not go unchallenged militarily.
On Wednesday, Tillerson said Russia and the United States plan to establish a “working group” to rehabilitate relations between the two nations.
“We had a lengthy exchange of views regarding the situation in Syria and shared perspectives on possible ways forward,” Tillerson said.
The secretary of state defended Trump’s characterization of Assad as “an animal,” saying “it is one that President Assad has brought upon himself.”
Lavrov did not share this assessment calling instead for an investigation into whether the Assad regime truly conducted the chemical weapon attack.
He stated at the joint press conference: “The negotiations have proven to be substantial and very frank. They have comprised a whole gamut of issues, bilateral relations as well as our interaction in the international arena.”
On Wednesday, Russia vetoed a United Nations Security Council resolution condemning the sarin gas strike that killed at least 80 civilians including women and children.
Russian Deputy U.N. Ambassador Vladimir Safronkov said the Western draft resolution “does not serve a useful purpose.”
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