There is no sign of a move towards the normalization of Russian-U.S. parliamentary dialogue, according to State Duma International Affairs Committee Chairman Alexei Pushkov.
"America is in the grip of anti-Russian sentiment, and policy experts who come from the United States say they have never seen such a degree of anti-Russian hysteria and anti-Russian propaganda even in the midst of the Cold War and in the period of Reagan's presidency. Back then the goal was to crush the Soviet foreign policy and now they aim at replacing the political regime in Russia," Pushkov told the newspaper Izvestia in an interview published on Tuesday.
"I do not see any positive signals or wish to normalize the parliamentary dialogue with the United States although we are maintaining contacts with certain congressmen," he said.
"When we requested the U.S. Congress administration to receive a delegation of Russian parliamentarians from the Federation Council and the State Duma in 2013 amid the Syrian crisis in order to discuss ways of resolving the Syrian problem, they agreed at first but later changed their mind. Any dialogue is a two-way process, and we will not push it on the U.S. as long as it deems [this dialogue] inexpedient," Pushkov said.
He said Russian and U.S. parliamentarians have had no relations since then.
"I asked former U.S. Ambassador McFaul to deliver my proposal of a meeting on a neutral territory, for instance, in Vienna or Geneva. Yet there was no answer," Pushkov said.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and the United States' Secretary of State John Kerry stressed the need to comply with the February 12 Minsk accords during their talks in Geneva, the Russian Foreign Ministry said on Monday.
The Russian Foreign Ministry sees a statement by NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe Gen. Philip Breedlove alleging Russia's political pressure on post-Soviet space as part of anti-Russian propaganda.
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