Moscow will not continue bilateral consultations with the US on improving relations after the expansion of US sanctions, as stated by Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Russia Sergey Ryabkov ,reports the Press Service of the Russian Foreign Ministry.
"It had been planned to continue, in the coming days, bilateral consultations on 'irritants' that have accumulated in Russian-American relations, in order to search for solutions to the extremely difficult situation toward which the American side has driven partnership and interaction with Russia. After the decision on sanctions, the situation does not allow for a round of such a dialogue, especially since there is no content for it, as Washington has neither offered nor will offer anything concrete in this area. Just as it did not return, nor will it ever return, the Russian diplomatic property expropriated in December of last year," said Ryabkov.
As RBC news agency reported, Deputy Secretary of State Tom Shannon may have taken part in the consultations; he was expected to visit Moscow on June 23rd, according to television channel ABC. Ryabkov earlier confirmed the upcoming meeting with Shannon.
The Russian Foreign Ministry has canceled this meeting, reported TASS, Interfax and Reuters.
Earlier, Ryabkov called the meeting a way to "lay the groundwork" for a meeting between Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump.
On June 20, the US Treasury extended the list of sanctions against companies and individuals due to the situation in Ukraine. The list included officials from Russia and the Donbas.
The Russian President's Press Secretary, Dmitry Peskov, commenting on the expansion of US sanctions, said that Russia would respond on the basis of reciprocity. "As the sanctions of all the previous several years show, the main principle of reaction to sanctions is, undeniably, the principle of reciprocity; therefore, this is quite reasonable and understandable," he said.