Russia and the United States “has the opportunity to align the relations at least, and ideally for putting on an upward trajectory,” said Deputy foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov, speaking on February 28 at the state Duma on “a round table” devoted to prospects of Russian-American relations. However, the “high expectations” from Russia, said Ryabkov. That the policy of the President of the United States Donald trump should be treated with caution, agree and other participants.
Obama is to blame
The responsibility for the crisis in relations between the two countries Ryabkov conferred on ex-US President Barack Obama. According to him, “Foundation of interaction” between the two countries was destroyed by the previous American President, when in December 2012 in the United States adopted the “notorious Magnitsky act”, “launched the hunt for Russian citizens” and was “trying to discredit the Olympics,” Ryabkov listed.
After the change of power in Ukraine in 2014, the American side is rapidly and radically restricted the cooperation with Russia, broke parliamentary contacts, stopped the work of the presidential Commission Ryabkov continued. In addition, after the events in Ukraine and the USA “began to pull up the potential of the Pentagon and NATO” to the Russian borders, “Obama and his people began to call the Baltic States and Poland are the front-line States,” said Ryabkov. According to the Deputy Minister, the return to the U.S. of Russian pilot Konstantin Yaroshenko to Russia would be a significant step to improve bilateral relations.
“The relationship began to sour in 2011, going downhill even before the annexation of Crimea, but the Crimea became a qualitative change ushered in a period of confrontation. If between Russia and the United States was in a bad partnership and a variety of growing friction, after the Crimean events, the confrontation between the countries became a reality,” recalled in an interview with the Director of the Moscow Carnegie Center Dmitri Trenin.
“Prepare for the worst”
After the election of President Donald trump had hopes that relations can improve, said Ryabkov. According to him, Moscow is closely monitoring the statements of the President of the United States, follow his Twitter. However, leading a meeting, the Chairman of the Duma Committee on international Affairs Leonid Slutsky has noticed that while the part of trump is only positive “rhetoric”, and specific actions aimed at improving relations, not yet.
Communist party leader Gennady Zyuganov, in his speech called trump “a product of its era”, which has always been tuned for a hard line against Russia. Trump, according to Zyuganov, partly starts to return to the policy pursued in the USA by the former leadership. The leader of Communists has noticed that trump has already begun to retreat from its positions and in its phraseology “appeared in the notes of Obama.” He also drew attention to the fact that the new U.S. President promised to increase the US defense budget is more than $50 billion, according to Zyuganov, shows that “many problems will be solved as they are solved forever.”
The leader “Fair Russia” Sergei Mironov in his speech noticed that the decisions of the trump out of the TRANS-Pacific partnership does not mean the failure of the US hegemony. In his opinion, when trump the US approach to foreign policy may be tougher. Mironov believes that businessman trump will actively use their experience of doing business, therefore, the relations and the negotiations would be “to raise rates”, “impose its own terms,” hard bargain. According to Mironov, trump’s words on the need to return the Crimea to Ukraine should not be considered a simple Declaration, and should be regarded as marking the contours of its policy. “We have to hope for the best but prepare for the worst” — called Mironov.
On 9 November last year, when trump was elected President, deputies of the state Duma applauded this event.
Scientific Director of the Institute of USA and Canada studies Sergey Rogov noted that the United States was a tough anti-Russian bipartisan consensus. He also urged to pay attention to the harsh rhetoric trump with respect to two contracts, a cornerstone for relations between Russia and the United States: the Treaty on reduction of strategic offensive arms (start-3) and the Treaty on the elimination of intermediate-range and shorter-range nuclear forces (INF). President trump on February 24 in an interview with Reuters, complained to the deployment of Russia’s cruise missiles in violation of the INF Treaty. “For me it’s very important,” said trump.
Ryabkov said that Moscow considers the new start Treaty is a useful tool, “really strengthens the security.” According to Deputy foreign Minister, Russia and the United States could effectively cooperate on combating terrorism.
“The official position, as I understand it, is that of illusions [in connection with the election of the trump], and there was not, but the window for cooperation in some areas remains open at the same time Moscow is ready to different variants of the situation”, — commented on the speech of the Deputy Minister Trenin.