The Deputy of the state Duma Andrey Makarov went recently to Washington to February 2, to participate in the 65th annual National prayer Breakfast with U.S. congressmen and senators, and the President of the United States Donald trump, told two sources in the Duma.
Another source in the lower house of Parliament dealing with international cooperation, confirmed that the MP received an invitation to this event and agreed to go, prior notification of the speaker of the state Duma Vyacheslav Volodin. Makarov himself has refused to answer questions . The Deputy, second convocation in a row who heads the Committee on budget and taxes, visit this Breakfast is not for the first time, said the source .
This is the first contact of the Russian deputies with American colleagues in the last few years at such a high level, said the source in the Duma. According to him, after the events of “Crimean spring” in 2014, the deputies did not go to this event.
This year the media reported only about the meeting in April the Chairman of the Federation Council Committee on international Affairs Konstantin Kosachev, member of the U.S. Commission on foreign Affairs, chairing the Subcommittee on Europe, Eurasia, and emerging challenges Dana Rohrabacher.
National prayer Breakfast is held in the USA every year since 1953 on the first Thursday of February in Washington. Every US President starting with Dwight Eisenhower, is present at the event, which is held by the Christian organization Fellowship Foundation.
That was at the National prayer Breakfast?
Trump, speaking at the Breakfast, promised to do everything possible to protect religious freedoms in the United States and hinted that he plans to run for a second term. “I hope to visit with you here seven times,” he said. The event is not limited to one Breakfast, and includes meetings, Lunches and dinners for representatives of political, social, religious and business elites, they usually takes up to 3,500 people, including guests from more than 100 countries.
The US state Department is not involved in organizing the National prayer Breakfast, said the representative of the USA Embassy in Russia.
Group relations with the United States
According to a source in the Duma, the invitation to Breakfast, was received by the Chairman of the Duma Committee on international Affairs Leonid Slutsky (in the US sanctions list), but from the trip he eventually refused.
In the state Duma was formed in November parliamentary group for relations with the United States, its composition has not yet formed, said a source in the faction of United Russia. According to him, “next week MPs will build a tight relationship with the American colleagues who would be willing to make contact with the Russian deputies.”
“To this group for relations with the United States existed, but due to the fact that the other side not really want, all of our initiatives support not found”, — stressed the member. According to him, the deputies hope that the new administration will be able to do it, “the program of interaction is studied, in particular, on family values.” In terms of international relations of the state Duma in 2017, approved by the Council of the Duma, trips of Russian delegations in the US yet.
Breakfast with businessmen
At a prayer Breakfast in Washington attended by the Vice-President of “OPORA Russia” Alexander Zharkov. He said that he went to the United States because “I wanted to adjust the relationship” after a new American President: “I believe that business people need to communicate in any way.” Zharkov is headed by a Russian official dealer of canadian company Lindal building a cedar home. The invitation for Breakfast Zharkov “surprised,” although, according to him, called him before, but he did not go. The invitation he sent us Senator (entrepreneur prefers not to say who it is). Zharkov said that other Russians at prayer Breakfast have not seen, noticed only citizens of Ukraine.
According to Ukrainian media, the event was supposed to visit from 50 to 70 representatives of Ukraine, including the leader of “Batkivshchyna” Yulia Tymoshenko.