MOSCOW, August 2. /TASS/. US elites and mass media demonize Russia regardless of who is in power in Washington, Director of Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) Sergei Naryshkin said in an interview with the Soloviev Live YouTube channel.
"We understand that, of course, Russia has been demonized to a large extent through the efforts by the US, first of all, Western elites and mass media," he said.
According to Naryshkin, US President Joe Biden is criticized by both Republicans and Democrats for meeting with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in Geneva. "He is already accused of betraying national interests by agreeing to have a summit in Geneva. And now he is accused of not imposing sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 operator, so we have to live with that," he added.
Naryshkin also stressed that the Democrats successfully used Russophobia when Donald Trump was the US President. "He was accused of these sins. He was accused of wanting, as he said, to get along with Russia, establish a constructive dialogue with Russian President Vladimir Putin. By the way, Republicans are quite actively taking advantage of that now," he emphasized.
"For an ordinary American citizen, some politicians’, in this case, US politicians’ behavior towards Moscow that is not tough enough is an argument for discrediting them, discrediting a certain politician. And, of course, I can imagine that all this works in the United States of America in many respects," Naryshkin noted.
At the same time, the director of Russia’s SVR mentioned that "good relations between Russia, on the one hand, and the United States and the West in general, on the other are possible by and large, but they will require great efforts to build".
"Interaction by the intelligence services (of Russia and the United States) on a specific track [the struggle against terrorism] confirms over and over again the objective need for good relations between Russia and the West," he said. "I do not think that they are impossible, but the road to establishing good relations is a very long one and it will require great efforts and great willpower on both sides."
Naryshkin described the Russian-US June 16 summit in Geneva as the first moderate step along these lines.
"It is wrong to overestimate it, but it should not be underestimated either. It is clear that one of the causes is rooted in the internal political struggle in the United States," he said.