MOSCOW (Sputnik) — In March, US Ambassador to Russia John Tefft said that Lavrov was expected to attend the council as it would be a good opportunity for Moscow and Washington to discuss the Arctic region.
“The event is planned and the preparation… for it is ongoing, but currently I am not ready to confirm that the ministerial level of all participating countries at this event will be fulfilled. We are still engaged in discussions on the conference's content, but the issue of the Russian foreign minister’s participation is a matter of a separate decision. Now I am proceeding from the fact that there is no solution yet,” Ryabkov said.
The council is comprised of Russia, the United States, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. The intergovernmental group aims to facilitate cooperation among the eight states and Arctic indigenous communities and focuses on sustainable development and environmental protection of the region.