"Moscow and Washington not only can but must cooperate"
Russian President Vladimir Putin received U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo at his Bocharov Ruchei residence in Sochi yesterday. Prior to the meeting, Pompeo held talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. It was Pompeo's first visit to Russia as the top U.S. diplomat.
Following Russia-U.S. talks, Vestnik Kavkaza asked the experts whether should one expect the parties to return to dialogue on disarmament, lifting or easing of sanctions, as well as what is the likelihood of the restoration of full-fledged relations between Moscow and Washington in the near future.
First Deputy Chairman of the Federation Council Committee on Foreign Affairs Vladimir Dzhabarov noted that although it is too early to talk about the parties returning to the INF Treaty or any disarmament negotiations, but still there are areas where Moscow and Washington not only can, but must cooperate. "In the first place I mean the fight against international terrorism. We have seen that in Syria we can and must cooperate. Among other issues are stabilizing the situation in Afghanistan, resolving Iran’s problems," he said.
"And, of course, non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries is desirable. Unfortunately, Americans say one thing, but in fact they never miss a chance to interfere," the expert said.
Speaking about improving Russian-American relations, the senator recalled that there is nothing impossible in politics. "Although I would not associate any warming of our relations with the lifting of sanctions," he urged.
"And it’s not for nothing that our president recently said that we shouldn’t count on some kind of breakthrough in the lifting of sanctions. We must expect that sanctions work against us and it will continue, but it should not prevent us from moving forward. Yes, it will be more difficult , but only when we can move forward under sanctions, those who impose them will understand that they are meaningless, and, probably, will refuse from this practice," Vladimir Dzhabarov concluded.
The senior research fellow at the European Research Centre of the International Relations Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Vladimir Olenchenko, noted that Russia and the United States really have to strive to restore full-fledged relations. "The more normal our relations are, the more stable global security will be and the more stable the development of the world community will be. We are aware of this and trying to achieve this understanding among Americans,” the expert explained.
“The main and first stage is the meeting of the presidents of Russia and the United States. It is necessary in order to determine the immediate priorities in restoring relations and undertake their implementation," the senior research fellow at the European Research Centre of the International Relations Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences said.
At the same time, he drew attention to the fact that the United States was carried away by its sanctions activities, but realized that it does not bring them the expected dividends.
Commenting on U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's statement that Moscow and Washington can cooperate in solving key problems, he pointed out that these are just common words for now. "I realize that at the moment it's just a slogan of the American side for two reasons. First, they need to show that the United States is ready to start or continue the dialogue. And second, Pompeo just covers himself, because the current administration has its opponents inside the country," Vladimir Olenchenko concluded.