Tillerson visiting Moscow as Russia hopes for better ties with US

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 06 April, 2017, 12:12am
UPDATED : Thursday, 06 April, 2017, 8:59am

Russia voiced hope Wednesday that US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s planned visit next week will help improve bilateral ties between the former Cold War foes.

The Russian Foreign Ministry said Tillerson’s talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will focus on the fight against terrorism, various regional conflicts and nuclear arms control.

Tillerson is scheduled to arrive Tuesday for a two-day visit to Russia.

The ministry blamed Barack Obama’s administration for a “deep crisis” in Russia-US relations and said Russia welcomes the Trump administration’s declared intention to mend the rift.

“From our side, we are open to cooperation in various fields on the basis of equality, non-interference in domestic affairs and respect for mutual interests,” it said in a statement.

The Kremlin has been encouraged by President Donald Trump’s promises to improve relations. However, hopes for an early thaw have been dashed by the congressional investigation of possible links between his campaign and Russia.

“We hope that the visit of the new US secretary of state will help take the US-Russian relations on a steady growth trajectory and increase the level of mutual understanding,” the ministry said. “It wouldn’t only answer the interests of our peoples, but also the entire world.”