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US not ready yet to restart arms control dialogue, Russian diplomat says

April 24, 18:57 UTC+3 MOSCOW

"Almost all middle-ranking and high-ranking officers of the Department of State with the rarest exception have been sacked," the diplomat said

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© AP Photo/Hasan Jamali

MOSCOW, April 24. /TASS/. The US is not yet ready to restart a dialogue with Russia on armament control issues, the director of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s department for non-proliferation and arms control told a news conference on Monday.

"This is an objective reality," Mikhail Ulyanov said. "This is the way the machinery of the American state is built, it needs some time after the new president has moved into the White House to work out new approaches and start translating them into life. This is called foreign policy review, and it is far from being completed," Ulyanov added. 

With this in view, the diplomat drew attention to another problem. "Almost all middle-ranking and high-ranking officers of the Department of State with the rarest exception have been sacked," he explained. Ulyanov said there haven’t been new appointments and "there are even no people with whom it would be possible to discuss this issue (arms control)".

He said additional time was needed to see all this settled, while meanwhile "there is no sense in building castles in the air".

"Russia is ready for a constructive conversation," he went on. "If this conversation begins, and it must begin because the absence of such a dialog is an absolutely abnormal situation, we will be pushing our own agenda but at the same time seek solutions that would not damage our interests," the diplomat said.

"This must be a normal diplomatic process, but it has not yet started," Ulyanov added.

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