The first face-to-face meeting of Lavrov and Blinken: the conversation turned out to be constructive

A constructive dialogue took place in Reykjavik between US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

The meeting took place on the sidelines of the ministerial session of the Arctic Council and lasted for about 2 hours, TASS reports. As Blinken described this meeting on Twitter, it was held to “test the proposal” for a more stable and predictable US-Russian relationship, further quote:

Today I met with Foreign Minister Lavrov to test a proposal for a more stable and predictable relationship with Moscow. I also reaffirmed our determination in response to Russia’s actions against Ukraine, RFE / RL (Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty, recognized in the Russian Federation as a media foreign agent – TASS) and Alexei Navalny.

Tweeted by Ned Price, the head of the State Department press service, who attended the meeting:

Secretary of State Blinken met with Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov and spoke of our commitment to potential cooperation in the Arctic and elsewhere, even as we continue to hold Moscow accountable for actions that hurt us or our allies.

In turn, Sergei Lavrov called the talks with the US Secretary of State constructive:

The conversation seemed constructive to me. There is an understanding of the need to overcome the unhealthy situation that has developed between Moscow and Washington in previous years. There are a lot of blockages. It is not easy to rake them out. But I felt Anthony Blinken and his team were committed to doing it. Today we reaffirmed our proposal to start a dialogue, considering all aspects, all factors affecting strategic stability: nuclear, non-nuclear, offensive, defensive. I have not seen a rejection of such a concept, but the experts still have to work on it. We agreed to continue our joint actions, which are developing quite successfully, on regional conflicts where the interests of the United States and Russia coincide – this is both the nuclear problem of the Korean Peninsula and the situation with efforts to restore a joint comprehensive plan of action on the Iranian nuclear program. This is Afghanistan, where the expanded troika of Russia, China, the United States and Pakistan is actively working.

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