BAKU, August 13 (RIA Novosti) – US-Russian relations are so important that it is impossible to put them on hold, a Kremlin aide said Tuesday, days after US President Barack Obama called for a “pause” in relations with Russia.
“What pause can there be if active contacts are ongoing, including between key ministers?” Russian presidential aide Yury Ushakov said.
Obama was due to visit Putin ahead of a G20 forum in St. Petersburg, but the US called off the visit last week, citing Russia’s granting of temporary asylum to fugitive former US intelligence leaker Edward Snowden.
“Whether Obama comes or not, the relationship is so important that it is impossible to drive it into an impasse,” Ushakov said, responding to a reporter’s request for comment about Obama’s “pause.”
The US president said Friday, in reference to the Snowden affair, that “I think the latest episode is just one more in a number of emerging differences that we’ve seen over the last several months.”
“It is probably appropriate for us to take a pause, reassess where it is that Russia is going, what our core interests are, and calibrate the relationship so that we’re doing things that are good for the United States and, hopefully, good for Russia as well,” Obama said.