Russia's Foreign Minister Rips Trump as Tillerson Talks Begin
- Author: Leroy Wright Apr 17, 2017,
Apr 17, 2017, 13:22
The U.S. and European nations have increased pressure on Putin to sever ties with Assad, so far to no avail.
Despite Mr Putin's comments, the two nations have been striving to salvage ties, agreeing to work together on an global investigation of a Syrian gas attack last week that prompted retaliatory American missile strikes. Western powers say the attack was carried out from the air and that Syrian rebels do not have any aircraft.
The majority of the worldwide community has blamed the attack in Idlib province, which killed 87 people including many children, on Syria's President Bashar al-Assad.
'We have seen very alarming actions recently with an unlawful attack against Syria, ' Lavrov said. During his presidential election campaign, Trump had indicated that he would be less willing than some of his predecessors to conduct military operations against other countries.
The talks got off to a frosty start, with the Russian politician branding the American cruise missile strike "illegal" and criticising "confusing and sometimes openly contradictory ideas" from the Trump administration on the US-Russia relationship and worldwide issues.
Tillerson, however, used his opening remarks to portray a more diplomatic tone in which he called the talks "an important moment in the United States' relationship with Russian Federation". "They were there", Trump said.
"We've agreed to establish a working group to address smaller issues and make progress towards stabilizing the relationship", Tillerson revealed.
"Right now we're not getting along with Russian Federation at all", Trump said at a White House press conference with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg.
Mr Tillerson also said that the Trump administration's position was clear: Bashar al Assad has to relinquish the presidency.
We noticed that when the Trump administration came to power, the U.S. role in the Astana and the Geneva process has been reduced to the very minimum.
He reiterated the USA position that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad must eventually relinquish power in Syria, a position starkly at odds with Russian Federation.
He also backed U.S. calls to find a political solution and said the G7 leaders were ready to work with Russian Federation to end the violence in Syria.
"We need concrete evidence on Russian Federation hacks and chemical attacks".
While Lavrov and Putin were less than welcoming to Tillerson on Wednesday, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov came out throwing haymakers.