In a rare interview on Friday, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said that the US and Russia have “agreed on a number of issues” in a new bilateral agreement, but that the United States will not give up its fight against terrorism.
The US-Russia deal was approved on Tuesday after a two-week round of talks in Kazakhstan.
In his first major international media interview since the US announced its withdrawal from the Paris climate deal in May, Tillerson said the US-Russian deal was “a huge achievement” for the United Nations.
“It was very, very hard, it was very difficult, it involved a lot of political capital and a lot in our bilateral relationship and a very long-term effort,” he told the Wall Street Journal.
He added: “And we have an agreement with Russia and Canada that we’re going to try and make the strongest possible contribution.” “
We want to have a relationship where we can make the best of it, and we can be a partner in the fight against the global menace of terrorism.”
He added: “And we have an agreement with Russia and Canada that we’re going to try and make the strongest possible contribution.”
“We’re not going to stop doing that.
“And some of the things are, we have a disagreement on the size of the joint military budget, so we’re not sure what the Russian side wants to do with that. “
“But we’ve done a lot. “
“I think what we’ve got now is a very significant achievement.” “
Tillerson told the Journal that Russia is prepared to do more to address US concerns about its nuclear weapons programme. “
I think what we’ve got now is a very significant achievement.”
Tillerson told the Journal that Russia is prepared to do more to address US concerns about its nuclear weapons programme.
“They’ve acknowledged their weapons capabilities.
We’re prepared to work with them on that,” he said.
Tillerson said he spoke with Russian President Vladimir Putin twice on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Turkey.
“Russia is ready to continue working with us in terms of addressing some of these issues, but also with some of our own concerns,” Tillerson added.
The two countries also signed a memorandum of understanding on security cooperation on climate change.
The accord, which will be formally ratified by the UN General Assembly later this year, calls for Russia to increase its military spending by 10 percent over 2020, a move that would come on top of a $1.3 billion increase in defense spending that was announced in March.
US Secretary Tillerson speaks during a news conference at the White House in Washington, DC, June 6, 2021.
“So there is more on the agenda for Russia than we’ve seen in a long time,” Tillerson said.
The move to increase military spending in the US would have an impact on Russia’s military spending, which is estimated at $7.8 billion by the International Institute for Strategic Studies.
Russia’s foreign minister also told reporters that the agreement was a “victory for the world”, but also criticised the United Kingdom and Canada for “losing their minds”.
“I can say that we have many differences,” Sergei Lavrov said, according to Reuters.
“At the same time we agree with them, that this is an important step.
But we don´t agree with the fact that they were able to keep their mind and not pay attention to the consequences.”