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UNITED NATIONS, February 4. /TASS/. Russia’s UN envoy Vitaly Churkin has held the first meeting with his newly-appointed US counterpart Nikki Haley. As the Russian missions’ spokesman Fyodor Strzhizhovsky said, Churkin and Haley agreed to maintain close cooperation in accordance with Moscow’s and Washington’s intentions.
"The Russian envoy received Nikki Haley at his residence. Both sides expressed the intention to cooperate tightly within the United Nations in accordance with their respective capitals’ intentions," he said.
On Thursday Haley for the first time spoke at the open meeting of the UN Security Council on the situation in Donbass. She claimed that Crimea was part of Ukraine and that US sanctions would not be lifted until Kiev regained control of the peninsula. Her predecessor Samantha Power had repeatedly expressed the same point of view. At the same time Haley said that the United States wished an improvement of relations with Russia.
After the UN Security Council’s meeting Churkin said he had taken note of a "tangible change of tone" in Haley’s statement in contrast to the previous ones made by Power. He said Haley sounded "friendly enough, with the allowances for the circumstances and the subject."
In reply to remarks by his US counterpart concerning Crimea Churkin recalled the first, historical words of the US Constitution: "We, the people…"
"The people of Crimea expressed their will in a referendum quite unambiguously. As many as 93% of the population voted for reunification with Russia, from which Crimea had been separated unfairly and illegally," Churkin said.