Updated 12:56 p.m. Moscow Time
MOSCOW, October 20 (RIA Novosti) – Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Monday he hopes the worsening relations between Moscow and Washington have hit rock bottom even though attempts to improve them are so far not in sight.
“We have already gone far and deep enough. I really hope that this decline in the level of cooperation has hit the end,” Lavrov said.
He added that relations have not fallen further, but there were “no visual signs of trying to improve relations.”
Earlier on Sunday, Lavrov said that Russia-US relations had been impacted by the Ukrainian crisis, with certain aspects of the relations coming to a standstill. He noted that Washington was willing to resolve the existing issues, but its approach was designed to serve US interests alone. However, the two countries keep working on a number of global issues, including the Middle East, Iran's nuclear program, UN Security Council agenda among other things.
Russia's relations with the United States have worsened since the start of the armed conflict in the east of Ukraine in mid-April, when the Kiev government sent troops to suppress independence supporters of the eastern regions of the country.
The West accused Russia of meddling in Ukraine's internal affairs and escalating the crisis, which Moscow has repeatedly denied. Western countries have implemented several rounds of sanctions against Russia over the Ukrainian crisis, targeting not only certain individuals but whole sectors of the Russian economy.
On October 15, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said that a reset of Russia-US relations was impossible as long as the sanctions remained in place.