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G7 top diplomats oppose Russia’s ‘malign behavior,’ but ready for dialogue — US official

April 23, 2018, 8:08 UTC+3

The nations reviewed the steps that they have taken to counter the negative trends emerging from the Kremlin that "threaten peace and security," the official stated

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The US Department of State building in Washington

The US Department of State building in Washington

© AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais

WASHINGTON, April 23. /TASS/. Foreign ministers of the Group of Seven (G7) nations announced their openness for a dialogue with Moscow adding they were unanimous in "opposing Russia’s malign behavior," a senior American official was quoted as saying by the US Department of State.

"There was G7 unity on opposing Russia’s malign behavior," the US official said after the first day of the meeting of top diplomats of the G7 (Britain, Germany, Italy, Canada, the United States, France and Japan) in Canada’s Toronto.

"The nations reviewed the steps that they have taken to counter the negative trends emerging from the Kremlin that threaten peace and security," the official stated.

"There was also openness among G7 members to dialogue with Russia while we hold them accountable for their malign activities and their efforts to destabilize nations," the official said adding that the ministers were expected to issue soon a final statement on their uncompromising stance in regard to Moscow.

"On Syria, the ministers recalled that Russia is the guarantor of chemical weapons in Syria and have failed in that role," according to the US official. "The United States does not believe that any reconstruction assistance should go to any areas under the control of (Syrian President Bashar) Assad regime."

"The April 13th allied strike was not a one-off but was part of a sustained allied campaign to re-establish the deterrent against chemical weapons, and that includes using military means again, if necessary," the American diplomat said.

On April 13 (April 14 early morning in Syria), the US, Great Britain and France delivered a massive missile strike against Syria without the UN Security Council’s authorization.

According to the data of the Russian Foreign Ministry, the missiles hit a research center in Damascus, the headquarters of the republican guard, an air defense base, several military aerodromes and army depots.

As Russia’s Defense Ministry reported, the attack lasted from 03:42 to 05:10 local time. The Syrian air defenses shot down 71 out of 103 fired missiles. Three civilians were injured in the attack. Washington, London and Paris claimed the attack was a response to an alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria’s Douma.

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