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On the Tracks of US-Russia Relations after G20 Summit

After the meeting of the Russian President Vladimir Putin and the US President Donald Trump at the sidelines of the G20 summit, the developments in the US-Russian relations may seem contradictory at first sight. On the one hand, the meeting of the presidents that lasted for nearly  two hours instead of half an hour is labeled as a successful one, on the other hand the White House declares that it supports the US sanctions against Russia, while Russia declares that it will turn to retaliatory measures agents the US act of expelling Russian diplomats. To note the diplomats were expelled still during the Obama administration for Russia’s assumed mediation in the US presidential election. However, Russia at that time restrained from any retaliatory measures.

Aside from the statements made, which sound contradictory at times, it is important to understand at what stage the US-Russia relations currently are and where the present tendencies lead.

To make it clear, first of all we need to base our assumption on the real steps made by the sides and not their statements. The bilateral meeting at the sidelines of the G20 Summit has already had its notable result, which became a ceasefire agreement reached in southwest Syria. The suggestion by the US president after the meeting to combine Russian-American efforts in the fight against cyber threats was also of interest. Although later on the US President declared that his suggestion was not realistic, the US State Secretary Rex Tillerson in his turn noted that the negotiations on the suggestions would be ongoing at different stages.

Another example of the US willingness to cooperate with Russia can be considered an appointed special representative by the Trump’s administration to participates in the negotiations on the Ukrainian crisis.

What refers to the problems of the Russian diplomats expelled for the US and to the possible new sanctions by the US against Russia, in both cases the statements are not completely in accordance with the real steps. On the first issue, the negotiations are ongoing between the US State Secretary Thomas Shenon and Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov. After the meeting of the two officials this week, in response to the question, whether the sides succeeded in finding a solution to the problem, the Russian official noted: "nearly"

As for the possible new sanctions of the US against Russia, the bill passed in the US Senate continues to be problematic and there is information that the White House continues to work with the Republican congressmen to ease the presented new sanctions against Russia.

To conclude, we should state that at this stage there is willingness both from Russia and US to cooperate. What refers to the statements made, that may seem contradictory at times, they also can be considered natural, as they usually aim at strengthening the position of the sides in the bilateral negotiations on various issues.

 

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