Face-to-face confrontation between high-level US-Russian diplomacy: There is a lot of mess, and it is not easy to clean up
China News Service, May 20 (Dong Hanyang) “It’s not a secret that we have differences.” A sentence from the US Secretary of State Blinken set the stage for a face-to-face meeting between him and Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov in Iceland on the evening of the 19th. Down the tone. This meeting is the first face-to-face confrontation between high-level officials of the two countries since the Biden administration took office. At the moment when US-Russian relations are at their lowest point since the end of the Cold War, it has attracted much attention.
“There is a lot of mess, and it is not easy to clean up”,
The foreign ministers of the United States and Russia paved the way for the summit
The Guardian pointed out that the two sides of the high-level meeting between the United States and Russia were “polite but attitude Resolute”; Agence France-Presse said that in view of the existing confrontational relationship, it is unlikely that the meeting will achieve a direct result, but it may pave the way for the summit of the two leaders next month.
Previously, US President Biden has stated that he is expected to meet with Russian President Putin in June to try to improve the deteriorating relations between the United States and Russia.
After this meeting, Brinken emphasized that the United States and Russia can work in multiple directions. “If the leaders of Russia and the United States can work together and cooperate, our people and the world will be safer.”
Lavrov mentioned that the dialogue of about 1 hour and 40 minutes is constructive , Russia and the United States must figure out how to handle the relationship between the two countries and overcome the “unhealthy situation that has formed in the US-Russian relationship in the past few years.”
Lavrov also bluntly said that Russia is ready to “clean up “The obstacles left by the previous U.S. government in bilateral relations include the normal operation of the diplomatic missions of the two countries. “There is a lot of mess, and it is not easy to clean up.” Lavrov said, “I feel Brinken and his team are determined to do so. We will not delay.”
“Cooperate where interests coincide”
< p>Although Russia and the United States intend to cooperate to pave the way for the upcoming summit meeting, “freezing three feet is not a day’s cold”, and it is difficult to ease the confrontation between Russia and the United States in many fields.
——Game in the Arctic Ocean, “This is our territory”
The confrontation between the United States and Russia in the Arctic region is one of the focuses of the talks, and both sides have been moving continuously recently.
Before the meeting, Lavrov stated that all Russian actions in the Arctic region are legal and warned Western countries not to compete for Russia’s sovereignty in the Arctic region. He said, “As everyone knows, this is our territory and our land. We are responsible for the safety of the Arctic coast.”
Brinken repeatedly mentioned the importance of “continuing to maintain peace and cooperation in the region.” And refutes Lavrov’s relevant remarks.
In recent years, Putin has listed the Russian Arctic region as the primary strategic location. However, the United States sent strategic bombers to Norway for training in February, which is considered to be one of the West’s attempts to increase its military power in the Arctic.
p >——Remove sanctions on “Beixi-2”, “The United States will continue to oppose the completion of the project”
On the “Beixi-2” natural gas pipeline project, the Biden government clearly expressed its opposition to the construction of the pipeline. Although Brinken and Lavrov met on the day of the meeting, the United States announced that it would waive sanctions on Nord Stream 2 AG, the operating company of the “North Stream-2” project, and related individuals, saying that “this is in the national interest of the United States” and “shows the government’s commitment to European energy security.” Promise of”. However, Brinken said, “The United States will continue to oppose the completion of the project.”
Lavrov did not respond to issues related to sanctions after giving a brief talk.
——Diplomatic issues, “the overall situation of the world depends on the state of US-Russian relations”
In April, the Biden administration cited Russia’s alleged “cyber attack, interference in the US presidential election, etc.” as As a result, 10 Russian diplomats in the United States were expelled. Russia subsequently resorted to the same means to retaliate. It recently included them on the list of countries that are not friendly to Russia and prohibits the U.S. Embassy in Russia from hiring local employees. The actions of the United States also triggered a “diplomatic war” between many Western countries and Russia, which was strongly condemned and hit back by Russia.
Regarding various differences, Brinken pointed out after the meeting, “If Russia continues to take aggressive actions against us and our allies, we will respond.” But at the same time, he said, “Our interests are intertwined in many areas. Overlap,” urge Russia to cooperate with the United States on issues such as the new crown epidemic, climate change, Iran and North Korea.
Lavrov responded that Russia’s position is clear, and there are serious differences in the assessment of the international situation between the United States and Russia. Nevertheless, Lavrov said that Putin and Biden agreed that the two countries should cooperate where their interests coincide, especially on the issue of strategic stability. “The overall situation of the world depends on the state of relations between Moscow and Washington.”