Head of the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) Sergei Naryshkin and Federal Security Service (FSB) chief Alexander Bortnikov visited Washington DC last week to meet with CIA director Mike Pompeo to discuss counterterrorism cooperation between the two countries, the Washington Post reports.
But even as WaPo pointed out, "meetings between US and Russian spy chiefs are not unheard of and Pompeo himself met with some Russian intelligence officials when he visited Moscow last May," the newspaper also immediately branded the meeting as “unusual” and claimed that it raised concerns in the United States.
Anonymous US intelligence officials cited by WaPo argued that they couldn’t recall so many top Russian intelligence officials "coming to Washington at once and meeting with a top American official."
They also "worried the Kremlin could conclude the United States is open to forgiving Russia for its actions and was not resolved to forcefully prevent future meddling", as the description of the meeting apparently "portrayed Russia as a partner willing to work with the United States and said the countries should look for ways to cooperate on counterterrorism issues."
Earlier this week however Mike Pompeo claimed that there has not been a "significant decrease" in Russian activity in the US, and that Moscow may now attempt to interfere with the upcoming congressional midterm elections in November.
The CIA head also claimed that Russia is an adversary rather than an ally, despite the ongoing cooperation between Moscow and Washington in the fight against terrorism.