MOSCOW, August 10. /TASS/. Moscow will not reconsider its stance on a number of key international issues to meet Washington's expectations. This will entail tighter US sanctions, the general director of the Russian International Affairs Council, Andrei Kortunov, told TASS in an interview.
He stressed that after the Russian-US summit in Geneva US President Joe Biden called for waiting for several months until the moment it would be possible to say something more specific about the outlook for Moscow-Washington relations.
"One has an impression that he gave [Russian President Vladimir] Putin several months to make corrections. During these several months Russia is to show that it has done its homework and its policy has changed," Kortunov said. "If the US side really thinks so, then such expectations are futile, of course, because the Russian leadership has no wish or readiness to make any fundamental changes to its policy."
Kortunov predicts that the US side will be strongly disappointed by Moscow's refusal to drop its intentions to match Washington's expectations.
"Then we will most probably see more sanctions and other repression towards the Kremlin. Many in Biden's America have been calling for this," he said. He believes that ahead of the election in Russia Moscow's rhetoric and stance towards the West would be getting harsher.
The analyst stressed that both countries were interested in continuing the strategic stability dialogue, but even here quite a few questions remained regarding its format and the aspects to be discussed. Also, Russia and the United States had many unresolved regional disagreements, from Ukraine and Iran to Libya, Kortunov said.
"Regrettably, we see no major positive shifts for the better. The sole achievement, and a very odd one in a sense is that Russia has become the second largest supplier of oil to the United States after Canada. This is somewhat surprising, bearing in mind the sanction policy and competition on the energy market," Kortunov said.
"It will be wrong to underestimate the importance of the restoration of some channels of communication, of the consultations that are already in progress and of the greater predictability and rationalism of US policies. Nevertheless, Moscow-Washington relations remain relations of rivalry and not cooperation. And there are no indications in sight something may begin to change in a more positive direction," Kortunov concluded.