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MOSCOW, May 18. /TASS/. Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova has dismissed as false a Politico publication which cited "two former senior White House officials" saying that the Obama administration had refused to grant Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov "an Oval Office audience."
"Since 2013, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov held 64 meetings and 192 telephone conversations with US Secretary of State John Kerry, most of which had been initiated by the United States. Besides, there were a lot of high-level contacts," the Russian diplomat said. "Russian President Vladimir Putin and his US counterpart Barack Obama held 11 personal meetings and 26 telephone talks, some of which were rather long," Zakharova pointed out. "So, taking into consideration the number of various meetings, there was no need for an Oval Office audience," she added.
"Moreover, the previous (US) administration did not seem willing to do anything to improve relations between Russia and the United States," Zakharova said.