Foreign Ministry: Russia has no illusions about relations with U.S.
Moscow has no illusions about the possibility of a breakthrough in Russian-American relations under the Biden administration, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said at a briefing today.
The diplomat stressed that Russia categorically opposes America's "cynical and incessant attempts" to interfere in the internal affairs of the Russian Federation. He noted that these attempts are denied precisely by those who formulate and implement the relevant policy.
Ryabkov noted that the extension of the Treaty on Measures for the Further Reduction and Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms, also known as the New START Treaty, is not a concession made by either Moscow or Washington.
"It should be emphasized that there was no question and there is no question of any concessions by any of the parties. We are certain that the joint decision on extending the treaty made by our countries is equally in keeping with their national interests," he said.
According to Ryabkov, "the necessary level of mutual predictability and transparency in the sphere of strategic offensive arms" will be preserved in relations between Russia and the United States in the foreseeable future thanks to that step. "This in itself is of paramount importance for strengthening international security and strategic stability," he stressed.
Ryabkov also commented on the prospects on resuming other pacts with Washington. According to him, Moscow would consider returning to the Open Skies Treaty if the United States changed its decision to leave.
"If the U.S., as it reviews its foreign policy priority and analyses the legacy of [ex-President Donald] Trump's administration, decides that an alternative is possible and signals that Washington is ready to start returning to the Open Skies treaty, we might somehow adjust the decision to launch internal procedures [for leaving the treaty]", the diplomat said.
At the same time, the official noted that the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), which expired in 2019 can't be restored in its previous form.
"In a nutshell, I do not think that there are any prospects to restore the INF in the form it had for 30 years", Ryabkov said.