U.S. Under Secretary of State Victoria Nuland arrived in Moscow on October 11 for two days of talks with senior Russian officials on bilateral and international issues after the two countries negotiated a sanctions deal to facilitate the visit.
Russian state media reported that Nuland would meet with President Vladimir Putin's deputy chief of staff, Dmitry Kozak, senior presidential aide Yury Ushakov, and Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov.
Kozak is Putin’s top adviser on the conflict in eastern Ukraine between Moscow-backed separatists and the government in Kyiv.
In the run-up to the visit, Moscow agreed to lift targeted sanctions against Nuland that would have prevented her from entering Russia.
In exchange, the United States removed one Russian official from its sanctions list.
The Russian official was not officially identified, but Russian media widely reported on October 10 that it was the acting deputy director of the Foreign Ministry’s department for nonproliferation and arms control, Konstantin Vorontsov.
The United States and other countries imposed sanctions against many Russian individuals and entities following Moscow’s 2014 annexation of the Ukrainian region of Crimea and Moscow's military, political, and economic support of separatists in parts of eastern Ukraine. Moscow denies it is involved in the fighting in that region.
Nuland will leave Russia on October 13 and travel on to Beirut and London.
U.S. Diplomat Nuland To Hold Moscow Talks After Reciprocal Sanctions Moves
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