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21 Jun, 2021 21:03

After two month absence, American ambassador to Moscow will return to Russian capital this week – US State Department confirms

After two month absence, American ambassador to Moscow will return to Russian capital this week – US State Department confirms

US Ambassador to Russia John Sullivan will return to Moscow this week, following through on plans for the two nations to reinstate their top envoys after the progress made at last week's presidential summit meeting in Geneva.

State Department spokesman Ned Price told reporters of the timeline for Sullivan’s return to Moscow at a press briefing on Monday. President Joe Biden’s administration also welcomed the return of Russian Ambassador Anatoly Antonov, Price said.

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Antonov arrived back in Washington on Sunday, saying he's optimistically expecting cooperation with US officials in building an “equal, pragmatic, bilateral relationship.” The ambassador was called back to Moscow in mid-March, after ABC News published an interview in which Biden agreed with his host that Russian President Vladimir Putin was a “killer,” and also warned that the Kremlin would pay for its alleged meddling in last year’s US presidential election. Something Moscow strongly denies. 

Sullivan left his post in Moscow in April, after a Russian official suggested he go home for “thorough, serious consultations” with his new Biden-administration colleagues. He has been ambassador to Russia since late 2019, when Donald Trump was still president.

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Sullivan said on Saturday, through a spokesman at the US Embassy in Moscow, that the Biden-Putin summit was “important” and that he looked forward to implementing the policy objectives that Biden outlined in Geneva: “strategic stability, human rights, a stable and predictable relationship with Russia.”

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