US, Russian Officials Signal Desire to Improve Relations

Lester Mason
May 16, 2019

If Russia were to interfere again in the 2020 USA election, Pompeo said, "it would put us in an even worse place". "Our elections are important and sacred and they must be free and fair".

Lavrov, meanwhile, accused the United States of funding Russian nongovernmental organizations, with the intent of interfering in Russia's elections.

Yuri Ushakov, the Kremlin aide, said Putin's meeting with Pompeo at the Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi had not yielded any breakthrough, but had been held in a business-like atmosphere.

However, the latest test-launching of missiles by Pyongyang is not only tantamount to a bad slap in the face for Trump, and may also undermine his record on foreign policy or even ruin his chances of winning the Nobel Peace Prize.

Despite the verbal sparring between Pompeo and Lavrov over Venezuela, there are rumors Russian President Vladimir Putin personally dislikes Maduro and might be willing to negotiate his exit for the right price, probably a reduction of American military support for Ukraine.

Pompeo's very constructive news conference with Lavrov included the Russian Foreign Minister intercepting a question about Russian election interference and launching into a six-minute harangue about how America has been interfering in Russian politics using the Internet.

Pompeo said today that he wants Iran to behave like a normal country.

SHAPIRO: Another big issue dividing the countries is Venezuela.

"On Venezuela, we have disagreement", Pompeo said. -Russian efforts to bring a United Nations -brokered end to the war that began in 2011 fell apart in 2016.

"He understands that the United States is going to be in the lead, but I think there are places we can work together", Pompeo said.

US national security adviser John Bolton has said Venezuela is in our hemisphere and that Russian Federation should not interfere.

But he added: "We have also made clear to the Iranians that if American interests are attacked, we will most certainly respond in an appropriate fashion".

Earlier in the day, The New York Times reported that the Pentagon had devised a plan to deploy 120,000 soldiers to the Middle East in the event of Iran deciding to accelerate nuclear weapons development or attack American forces.

"We spent a fair amount of time thinking about North Korea, how we might unlock the denuclearization", Pompeo said according to a readout from the State Department, adding he believes Putin "understands that the going to be in the lead" in the process.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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