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Kremlin: Moscow-Washington Relations at Lowest Level

© Sputnik / Alexei Danichev / Go to the mediabankA general view shows the St. Basil's Cathedral and the Kremlin's Spasskaya Tower
A general view shows the St. Basil's Cathedral and the Kremlin's Spasskaya Tower - Sputnik International, 1920, 14.02.2022
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Relations between Russia and the United States are at their lowest, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told Sputnik, mentioning that now the countries at least have some channels for communication unlike several years ago.

"Here, perhaps, it is possible to mention the positive aspect that no matter how hard it is in other areas, there are still certain channels for dialogue. Heads of state are in dialogue, communication is underway in other areas. This is a plus. This is a plus, because, you know, just a couple of years ago, we had zero dialogue, as such, there were no contacts. But otherwise, unfortunately, in bilateral relations we can only speak about minuses. We are at a very, very low level, relations are pretty much non-existent", Peskov said.

When it comes to talks on security guarantees with the West, Russia is preparing for the worst but is hoping for the best, Peskov noted.

"In terms of conceptual issues for us, the Americans are ignoring our concerns, I mean the issue raised by President [Vladimir] Putin about security guarantees. Therefore, in this regard, there is no optimism, but we still hope. As reasonable people, we prepare for the worst but we still hope for the best", he said.

The Kremlin spokesman also said that the presence of communication channels will allow Russia and its opponents to find a path towards a solution. Peskov also said that Russia would like the word "war" to be excluded from the communication.
© Sputnik / Sergey Guneev / Go to the mediabankRussian President Vladimir Putin and US President Joe Biden Meet in Geneva
Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Joe Biden Meet in Geneva - Sputnik International, 1920, 14.02.2022
Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Joe Biden Meet in Geneva
According to the official, Moscow is not ready for dialogue with the United States and NATO on strategic security if they last many years as the discussion is about serious threats to the nation.

"President Putin has repeatedly said that we are not ready to make this entire dialogue multi-year negotiations, because otherwise, it will be conducted in parallel with specific actions of the NATO countries and the United States to arm Ukraine, to draw Ukraine into the military infrastructure of NATO and the gradual absorption of Ukraine by NATO. This is not in our interests", Peskov said, adding that this is a threat to Russia and the country needs to take measures to minimise risks.

He also said that Russia has not received direct answers to its proposals on security guarantees as the West prefers to focus on secondary issues but Russian President Vladimir Putin will keep insisting that Moscow’s ideas are not ignored.

"Putin is very consistent in his approach to our, well, I want to say, partners, but, unfortunately, they are now more opponents than partners. He is straightforward when he asks questions and expects direct answers. And just as in 2007 he directly raised questions, so in 2022 he directly raised questions in the drafts of the two documents that were handed over to Washington and NATO. We didn't get direct answers," Peskov said.

The spokesman mentioned that Russia sees attempts to focus on secondary issues in security negotiations.

"Moreover, we note an attempt to concentrate on secondary details and an attempt to avoid any understanding of the issues that are of critical importance to us. But, I have no doubt that President Putin will continue to be consistent in his position and will insist that those issues that are actually existential issues for us, so that these issues are not left without attention and are not ignored", Peskov said.

Moscow issued its security suggestions for NATO and the United States in late 2021 as tensions escalated around Ukraine. Russia specifically requested guarantees that NATO would not expand eastward to include Ukraine and Georgia, however, the bloc refused to abandon its open-door policy. The US and NATO have submitted their responses to the proposals, which Moscow is still analysing before deciding on the next step.
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