SOCHI, May 13. /TASS/. US State Secretary John Kerry has raised the issue of US sanctions against Russia at Tuesday’s talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Sochi, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists on Wednesday.
"Talking about the sanctions topic, it was touched upon," Peskov said, commenting on yesterday’s talks. "It was raised not by the Russian side," he added.
However, "the topic is still not on the agenda," Peskov noted.
After talks with Putin and Lavrov, Kerry said: "If and when Minsk is fully implemented, it is clear the US and EU sanctions can begin to be rolled back." "We are in significant agreement on the most important issue of all, which is that [the conflict in Ukraine] will only be resolved by the full implementation of Minsk and all of us have responsibilities to undertake in order to affect that implementation," the US diplomat said.
"Our preference is not to have sanctions [against Russia] but the sanctions will be there in an effort to try to secure the peace that everybody wants in Ukraine," Kerry said, speaking before the Foreign Ministerial Meeting of NATO in Turkey’s Belek earlier today.
Russia has repeatedly refuted allegations of sending troops to Ukraine. "There were and are no Russian servicemen in Ukraine, the Russian army does not fight there," Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said. Putin also denied Russian military presence in Ukraine during his question-and-answer session in April.
Moscow drew attention to the fact that Russian-Ukrainian border is closely observed by Western security services, including from space. Most accusations of Russia’s interference in Ukrainian affairs are based on Internet publications which cannot be considered as credible evidence.