Ryabkov: No plans to contact Pompeo until he is approved as US secretary of state

Ryabkov: No plans to contact Pompeo until he is approved as US secretary of state

Moscow does not plan to build contacts with Mike Pompeo until he is approved as US secretary of state, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said, commenting on US President Donald Trump’s decision to replace the secretary of state, TASS reports.

"Appointments of senior administration officials need to be approved by the Senate, after which the newly appointed are sworn in," Ryabkov pointed out. "I think we can’t consider any contacts until all the stages of the process are completed," he added.

Moscow is not ready to offer new dates for consultations with US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Thomas Shannon amid the expansion of sanctions, according to Ryabkov.

"We are not ready to come up with new dates, it would be particularly strange given today’s expansion of the US sanctions lists," the senior Russian diplomat said.

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