MANILA, August 6. /TASS/. Russia and the United States have agreed on keeping the Ryabkov-Shannon format, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Sunday.
Lavrov made this statement after meeting with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on the sidelines of the ASEAN forum in Manila.
"As you know, the Ryabkov-Shannon mechanism exists. Russian Deputy Foreign Minister [Sergei] Ryabkov and US Under-Secretary of State [Thomas] Shannon have already met several times. We agreed it would be useful to keep this format and continue discussing within its framework all complex issues of our bilateral agenda, which, unfortunately, are not getting less," Lavrov said.
"We felt the readiness of our American colleagues to continue this dialogue after all. I believe there is simply no alternative to this," the Russian foreign minister said.
The first meeting of the working group headed by Ryabkov and Shannon took place on May 8 in New York. The second meeting scheduled for June 23 in St. Petersburg was delayed by Moscow in the wake of Washington’s decision to expand anti-Russian sanctions and finally was held on July 17 in the US capital.