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Lavrov assures Hamburg meeting between Putin, Trump will clarify Russian-US ties

June 30, 11:37 UTC+3

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his US counterpart Donald Trump are expected to meet on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Hamburg

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Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov

© Stanislav Krasilnikov/TASS

MOSCOW, June 30. /TASS/. The meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and his US counterpart Donald Trump expected to be held on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Hamburg should clarify bilateral relations, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at the Primakov Readings conference on Friday.

"Relations between Russia and the United States are particularly important in today’s world, as achieving many tasks at the global level, from ensuring strategic stability to resolving regional crises, depends on the two countries," the Russian top diplomat said.

"We see that most countries are concerned over these abnormal relations [between Russia and the United States - TASS] that have become hostage to the domestic political struggle in the US," Lavrov said. "We expect the Hamburg meeting between our presidents to clarify the prospects for Russian-US cooperation," he added.

The Russian foreign minister expressed hope that "pragmatic approach aimed at ensuring national interests through most effective methods will prevail."

"As we have been informed by Washington, the US legislators, including heads of the Congress Foreign Affairs Committees, decided to make a pause," he said.

Both leaders are guided in their activity by the national interests of their countries, Lavrov said. "Probably they better than anyone else understand these interests," he noted.

Speaking about a meeting between Putin and Trump on the sidelines of the next week’s G20 summit in Germany’s Hamburg, Lavrov said: "It is most important to overcome an abnormal stage in our relations when leaders of the two major powers communicated between each other only by phone and have not met each other personally."

Lavrov recalled that he had a meeting in the White House with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Donald Trump in May, but noted that a personal contact between the presidents in addition to their phone conversations is very important.

"Moreover, judging by the phone conversations, both of them have a wish to overcome the abnormal situation today and start agreeing on particular issues, on which bilateral relations depend, including interests of businesses of the two countries and solving international problems," he said.

According to Lavrov, a "witch hunt" is underway in the United States. "They have frightened people in many ways but I believe that this will cease. And this absolute abnormality that is taking place in the US political life, when not a single proven fact is presented and there are attempts to replay the election results, this cannot last for long," the Russian foreign minister said.

"There is such an atmosphere there now, such a witch hunt is underway that no one wants to do something that is completely normal in a different atmosphere but in the current atmosphere - something that will be perceived as being a witch. People have been frightened in many ways," the Russian foreign minister said.

"But I believe that this will cease. And this absolute abnormality that is taking place in the US political life, when not a single proven fact is presented and there are attempts to replay the election results, this cannot last for long," the Russian foreign minister said.

"After all, the American society has the instinct of self-preservation, like the American political system," Russia’s top diplomat said.

When asked about the contacts between members of the US Congress and Russia, Lavrov said that "there have been attempts at establishing such contacts, even some brief meetings were held on the sidelines of various events." "As we have been informed by Washington, the US legislators, including heads of the Congress Foreign Affairs Committees, decided to make a pause," he said. "I believe it is not right, because our experience in inter-parliamentary relations with the majority of countries shows that it is a very important aspect, since members of parliament represent their country’s people," the Russian foreign minister pointed out.

According to Lavrov, in the US Congress, "there are very active senators and members of the House of the Representatives, who dedicate themselves to foreign policy." "Many of them have contributed a lot to Russian-US relations, even to relations between the Soviet Union and the United States, so there are some people who I am sure would not like inter-parliamentary communication channels to be blocked," Lavrov said.

"There is a need to agree on a common interpretation of international law," he said. "In this regard, it is hard to overestimate the importance of the United Nations, which has universal legitimacy," the Russian top diplomat added.

According to Lavrov, the latest experience shows that joint activities supported by the United Nations through the UN Security Council resolutions may pave the way to significant progress in solving most difficult and complicated issues. "At the same time, attempts at adjusting the institutions that came to be in the bipolar confrontation era to the 21st century reality are bound to fail," the Russian foreign minister pointed out.

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