Russia-US relations at an 'all-time low' following Syria strike
Russia-US relations at an 'all-time low' following Syria strike
17 April, 2017, 05:43
Our chief foreign affairs correspondent, Margaret Warner, has our report.
Earlier Wednesday, Putin said that U.S. -Russia relations have gotten worse during Donald Trump's presidency. "We have said that there need to be a very thorough investigation into this incident, which has become the subject of many speculations", Lavrov said.
"We frankly discussed the current state of the U.S. -Russia relations".
"There is a low level of trust between our two countries", Mr Tillerson told reporters in Moscow. "The world's two foremost nuclear powers can not have this relationship", he said.
Speaking of the missile strikes he authorized against the base the carried out the chemical attack, Trump later added: "I have absolutely no doubt we did the right thing".
And Putin said the same thing on Wednesday, particularly that trust between the U.S and Russian Federation has eroded.
Despite hopes of an improvement in ties under Trump, the Tillerson-Lavrov talks look set to be dominated by the war of words over Syria - where more than 320,000 people have died in six years of brutal war. There were no signs that would support the statement, the allegation that chemical agents were used there at all.
"The longer-term status of President Assad will be decided by the Syrian people", Tillerson had said, when asked whether the US would get involved in Syria's internal politics on March 30.
REX TILLERSON: We do think it's important that Assad's departure is done in an orderly way, an orderly way, so that certain interests and constituencies that he represents feel that they have been represented at the negotiating table for a political solution.
Thousands of evacuated Syrians stuck as transfer stalls
They are also causing demographic changes because those who are displaced are usually Sunni Muslims, like most of the opposition. Syrian state TV blamed the rebels for obstructing the deal, causing thousands of evacuees to be stuck in bus depots overnight.
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In a stark warning to Trump, Mr Lavrov said Russia, Iran and Syria have "common procedures against any aggression" from the US. The U.S. says it has images proving the bomb left a crater in a road rather than hitting a building.
He even pointed out that all the vacancies in the U.S. State Department make it hard to tell what's going on in the U.S. capital.
U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Wednesday that Syria has used chlorine bombs and other chemical weapons dozens of times.
Trump branded the regime leader Bashar al Assad a "butcher" and questioned Russia's role in the chemical attack. But he's learned more quickly than the last two presidents - especially Barack Obama - that Mitt Romney got it exactly right in 2012: Russian Federation is America's major geopolitical foe. But in a Fox Business Network interview, the U.S. president said he wouldn't intervene militarily against Assad unless the Syrian leader resorts to using weapons of mass destruction again.
Slate looks at a couple reasons for why President Trump hasn't been almost as pro-Russia as candidate Trump, including the possibility that he's been prevented from following pro-Russia policies by political realities in Washington, or simply that he's changed his mind on Russian Federation. Trump himself accused Putin of backing "an animal" and "a butcher", someone who is "truly an evil person". "I would like to think that they didn't know, but certainly they could have".
"Right now we're not getting along with Russian Federation at all", Trump said at a White House press conference with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg. "It'd be a fantastic thing if we got along with Putin and if we got along with Russian Federation, and that could happen, and it may not happen; it may be just the opposite".
A senior administration official who briefed reporters Wednesday said it is "very important for us to call out Russian Federation over their sponsorship of the Syrian regime".
"We have not seen a single fact, or even a hint of facts", he said.
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