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LONDON, June 15 (Itar-Tass) — The chairman of the Russian State Duma’s committee for international affairs, Alexei Pushkov, believes Russian-US relations are facing a rather difficult period because of Syria and U.S. missile defense plans in Europe.
The expected reset in relations between the two countries has hung, he said at a news conference for foreign and Russian reporters at the Russian Embassy in London on Thursday.
The deployment of U.S. missile shield elements in Europe mars bilateral relations, the head of the Duma committee stressed. According to him, this creates a crisis of trust in relations. Russia regards these moves by Washington in Europe as its bid to change strategic parity in its favor, Pushkov said.
The Magnitsky case also adds to tensions in bilateral relations, he said. Judging by all, the U.S. administration with President Barack Obama at the head will not be able to prevent the passing of the so-called Magnitsky Act, he stressed.
The U.S. president is interested in the development of cooperation with Russia on the settlement in Afghanistan, on the situation around Iran, but legislative moves in connection with the Magnitsky Case can aggravate the general atmosphere of bilateral relations, including in the business sphere, he continued.