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Russian diplomat says restoration of Russia-US ties will be long and difficult

The diplomat added that Moscow also does not consider the visit of Carter Page, a former adviser to Donald Trump, as a certain signal from the future American authorities

MOSCOW, December 15. /TASS/.  Moscow expects that the vector of US policy towards Russia will change under the new administration, but the process of mending ties will be long and difficult, Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov told TASS.

"Any trust is out of the question in this situation, but the process of restoration of relations, if it comes to this, will be very long and difficult against this background," the senior diplomat said.

"Although, of course we expect that the vector of the US policy will change after the administration changes, and there won’t be so explicit attempts to play the anti-Russian card," he said. "This was a new phenomenon at the stage of the election campaign, but this hasn’t stopped in the post-election period either," he added.

Within this context, Ryabkov expressed regrets that "those structures of the administration, which could have been expected to stand aside from this politicized energy outbreak by virtue of their responsibility and the nature of their activity, have also found themselves involved in this dirty and unseemly game."

Future US Administration 

Russia’s authorities have no contacts with U.S. President-elect Donald Trump’s future administration, Ryabkov reiterated.

"Now, we have no contacts," he said.

"Until January 20, 2017, our partner is the Obama administration. Contacts continue with it on various matters, various issues are being discussed - from arms control to efforts against illegal fishing."

Moscow is keeping to the "pace and framework that pose problems to no one," the Russian diplomat noted. "And after a new team, a new administration is appointed and its officials are approved on their posts, we will, naturally, work with this administration." 

Russia may expect any unfriendly or directly hostile actions from the outgoing US administration, Ryabkov responded, commenting on US threats to retaliate to Moscow’s alleged attempts to influence the presidential campaign:

"Everything is possible. We may expect absolutely any unmanifest, unfriendly and directly hostile actions from the outgoing administration."

Carter Page and his Moscow visit 'not a sign' 

Russia does not see the arrival of Carter Page, a former adviser to US President-elect Donald Trump, as a certain signal from the future American authorities:

"He is an economist coming here on his own business," the diplomat said. "He has worked since long, and as I understand keeps working in Russia." 

"As far as I know he has an investment experience. That is why, we of course welcome if foreign investors come here and work out their issues as to investing into this or that sector or an exchange of wherever else," Ryabkov said.

He said Page had not been received by state agencies. "We did not see and don’t see his arrival as a certain signal from Trump - this couldn’t be the case," he added.

"It is sad that Western media environment, Western media present the very fact of the arrival here of an investor from the US as a certain argument substantiating this raging ‘conspiracy theory’," he added.

Carter Page visited Moscow on December 8-12 and made a speech at the Russian New Economic School.