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UK top diplomat says 'too early to normalise diplomatic relations’ with Russia

September 21, 11:04 UTC+3 LONDON
The Russian and UK's top diplomats discussed the Syrian conflict and the Ukrainian crisis
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British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson

British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson

© EPA/JAKUB GAVLAK

LONDON, September 21. /TASS/. It is ‘too early to normalise diplomatic relations’ between Russia and Great Britain, however the countries must continue a dialog on major issues on the global agenda, the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office quoted on Wednesday Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson as saying at a meeting with Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov on the sidelines of the 71st session of the UN General Assembly.

"The Foreign Secretary was clear that while ongoing disagreements mean it is too early to normalise diplomatic relations, it is right that both countries continue to discuss important global issues," it said in a press release TASS has received.

The two diplomats focused, in particular on the situation in Syria and Ukraine.

"The ministers discussed the crisis in Syria and the increase in violence in recent days, including the recent unacceptable attack on an aid convoy. The Foreign Secretary pressed for Russia to use its influence constructively and underlined the need for the international community to work together to resolve the conflict," it went on.

"Mr Johnson also raised the situation in Ukraine, where there are continued violations of the Minsk agreements, and stressed the need for a sustainable ceasefire in Eastern Ukraine," the press release said.

A Foreign Office spokesman said it was "their first face-to-face meeting since Boris Johnson was appointed" as Foreign Secretary in July 2016.

The Russian Foreign Ministry reported that "the sides exchanged opinions on topical issues of the global agenda with an emphasis on the current situation in Syria and around it."

Besides, the ministers "discussed prospects for giving a boost to Russian-British contacts at different levels in furtherance of a positive impetus given to this process at a meeting of Russian President Vladimir Putin with British Prime Minister Theresa May on the sidelines of a G20 summit in Hangzhou on September 4," it said.

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