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Diplomat believes Trump should be given chance to improve relations with Russia

April 27, 8:10 updated at: April 27, 8:53 UTC+3

The Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman says the US launched fake news campaign against Russia under Obama administration

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© Artyom Geodakyan/TASS

THE UNITED NATIONS, April 27. /TASS/. US President Donald Trump has just taken the office, so he should be given a chance to improve relations with Russia, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said in an interview with Yahoo News.

"He’s (Trump) just starting. Just give him a chance," Zakharova said in response to presenter Katie Couric’s question why the relationship between Russia and the US had not improved under President Trump.

Zakharova supposed that it might have been caused by the political course chosen by former US President Barack Obama’s administration.

"Probably, that has sort of connection with President Obama’s ideology Washington is dominating the world. Probably, that was the point," she said. "Actually, we did nothing to make our relationship worse because we are very interested to develop our relationship in different fields with the United States."

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said during his visit to Moscow in April that relations of the two countries were at a low point.

"I do agree (with Tillerson’s words). And we made so many statements on that. We have to somehow improve the relations just in the interests of our two peoples," Zakharova said.

On April 13, Trump wrote on his Twitter page, "Things will work out fine between the U.S.A. and Russia. At the right time everyone will come to their senses & there will be lasting peace!" Nevertheless, he said US relations with Russia were at "an all-time low."

Fake news campaign

US media outlets circulated fake news about Russia under the administration of President Barack Obama, seeking to destroy relations between the two countries, she added. 

Before Obama’s presidency, the US media had published neither "positive nor neutral news from Russia," however, "there were no such massive attacks of fake news," she said.

"Only bad things about terrorist attacks, corruption, and like that… But under Obama administration we faced absolutely different approach to Russia. It was sort of attempt to destroy bilateral relations in general, and so lots of fake news appeared," Zakharova said.

The Russian diplomat said she was not certain that Washington was responsible for disseminating false information about Russia. Nonetheless, she underlined that the period of Obama administration "definitely showed an absolutely negative approach" to Russia.

At the same time, she rejected the West’s accusations that Russia circulated fake news reports to reach geopolitical goals.

"I just want any example of Russia spreading fake news, just show me one example," she said. "I can present you tons, dozens, billions of examples of Western media spreading false news about Russia," she told presenter Katie Couric.

US elections are not Russia’s business

Commenting on US intelligence services’ accusations that Russia allegedly interfered in the 2016 US presidential election, Zakharova shrugged them off saying Moscow would prefer to see evidence for these conclusions. She said that it was a strong struggle among political groups within the US.

"Unfortunately, the whole world, foreign policy became a part of US entire policy," she said.

Russia has been outspoken of elections in the United States, Europe and other countries.

"We do not support candidates for foreign elections. It’s not our business at all," she said. "Trump, Hillary Clinton, others are not Russian candidates. They are not Russian presidents."

Speaking about election campaign of US presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, the diplomat said "in Russia people were a little bit tired of this policy of demonizing Russia," Zakharova said.

"I can tell you for sure that ordinary people were so much tired of hearing Russia is bad," she said.

Six-party talks

Donald Trump’s administration should not reject the six-party talks on North Korea’s nuclear program, she went on. 

Russia fully supports all UN Security Council’s resolutions, which ban nuclear tests, Zakharova stressed. "There is a mechanism, six-party talks, and the question is not for Russia. The question should go to the United States (as to) why they have rejected this mechanism of improving the situation in the Korean Peninsula."

The diplomat noted that each time when North Korea conducts a nuclear test, Russia makes a very strong statement. "We also use our diplomacy mechanisms to resolve the situation."

Last week, US Vice President Mike Pence told CNN in an exclusive interview that the Trump administration will not be negotiating directly with North Korea.

The six-party talks, bringing together South Korea, North Korea, the US, China, Japan and Russia, were suspended in 2008 at Pyongyang’s initiative.

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