Sergei Lavrov reiterated Russia’s position that Moscow played no role in the nerve agent poisoning in Salisbury of former Russian double agent Sergei Skripal (Ben STANSALL)
Moscow (AFP) – Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Friday in a phone conversation with US counterpart Mike Pompeo that Moscow categorically rejected the latest US sanctions, the foreign ministry said.
“The Russian side expressed categorical rejection of the new sanctions recently announced by Washington,” the ministry said in a statement.
Lavrov reiterated to the US Secretary of State Russia’s position that Moscow played no role in the nerve agent poisoning in Salisbury of former Russian double agent Sergei Skripal, which prompted the latest US sanctions.
“Lavrov stressed that neither the US nor Britain nor any other country since the incident in Salisbury has presented a single fact to back up such claims,” the ministry said.
The British government has blamed Russia for the attack using the Novichok nerve agent developed in the Soviet Union and has won support from EU members, the US and other countries, which in March expelled Russian diplomats in a coordinated action.
The US State Department provided a short readout of the call, noting that Pompeo and Lavrov had discussed the new sanctions and “ongoing challenges in Syria.”
“Secretary Pompeo reiterated that the United States seeks an improved relationship with Russia and agreed to future dialogue,” State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a statement.
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