by Staff Reporter
May 25, 2013 (TSR) – Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev has handed over a response letter on Wednesday from President Vladimir Putin to U.S. President Barack Obama’s letter dealing with the current state of bilateral relations and their prospects during a conversation with Obama in Washington.
The letter is a response to Obama’s message that U.S. national security adviser Tom Donilon brought to Moscow in April. Obama’s message has not been made public, but Russian presidential aide Yury Ushakov said last month that it contained a number of proposals to deepen bilateral dialogue and cooperation, including on missile defense, and to expand economic ties.
Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev is currently on an official visit to the U.S. Obama briefly joined a meeting between Patrushev and Donilon in Washington on Wednesday.
“The Russian president stresses that today specific moves that improve the atmosphere of dialog and prevent the emergence of new ‘irritants’ that have a negative influence on our relations are in demand as never before,” Patrushev said.
Patrushev visited the United States this week and passed a message from Putin to Obama.
“This document reflects how the Russian leadership views the building of further dialog and joint work on common challenges and threats. The main idea is the need to strengthen and comprehensively develop Russian-U.S. relations and to expand honest dialog in all spheres based on mutual trust between our countries,” Patrushev said.
In Patrushev’s opinion, U.S. proposals on the missile defense issue are a move in the right direction but they do not lift Russia’s concerns
“We value the readiness to ensure transparency of missile defense programs. At the same time we think that political statements that there is no intention to undermine the strategic deterrence potential of the other side are obviously not enough,” Patrushev said.
“Cosmetic adjustments of American plans like the refusal to create a new interceptor cannot lift our concerns over the destabilizing influence of the missile defense on strategic stability,” he added.
“We have yet to reach mutually acceptable decisions on these issues. The Russian president ordered to develop our proposals on a large number of points at issue that would be given to the American side. The continuing intensive dialogue on this subject will contribute to achieving specific agreements,” Patrushev said.
At the same time, Patrushev clarifies that Russia will not prolong the Nunn-Lugar program but is ready to implement some U.S. projects in the weapons of mass destruction (WMD) non-proliferation sphere.
Nearly all hot topics on Russia-U.S. relations have been mentioned in a letter sent by President Vladimir Putin to his U.S. counterpart Barack Obama, the Kremlin said Friday.
According to presidential aide Yuri Ushakov, Putin stressed in his letter that Moscow’s vision on issues concerning the missile defense, Syria, Iran and the Korean Peninsula differed from Washington’s stance.
“Naturally, our estimations of the U.S. plans on missile defense are different from the U.S. vision in many aspects,” Ushakov told reporters.
Putin mentioned virtually all hot topics of the Russia-U.S. relations in his message, including cooperation in such areas as security and humanitarian relief.
Obama and Patrushev “also discussed the importance of deepening counterterrorism cooperation and the need for a negotiated political settlement in Syria,” she said.
Ushakov said the Kremlin did not expect another round of message exchanges between Putin and Obama. Instead the two leaders will meet in person during the G8 summit in Northern Ireland and talk over phone, Ushakov said.
During the meeting, Obama reaffirmed his desire to strengthen the bilateral relationship with Russia and said he was looking forward to seeing Putin in June at the Group of Eight summit in June.
“The president reaffirmed his desire to strengthen the bilateral relationship, including U.S.-Russian economic ties,” National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said in a statement.