USA open for discussions on Syrian settlement with Russia - Tillerson

Tillerson Responds to Criticism of Low Morale at State Department, Says 'Vast Majority' Have Adjusted to New Admin

Tillerson Responds to Criticism of Low Morale at State Department, Says 'Vast Majority' Have Adjusted to New Admin

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson says President Donald Trump is not happy with the new package of Congressional sanctions against Russian Federation, particularly because they may hamper attempts improving ties between the two countries.

Relations between the US and Russian Federation are "under considerable stress" but Washington and Moscow are trying to work together to fight ISIS and create conditions for peace in Syria, said US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, RT reports.

The Senate last week approved new sanctions against Russia, Iran and North Korea that are now waiting for President Donald to sign into law. Still, Putin's decision to do so came right after Congress voted to slap Russian Federation with more economic sanctions. "I think the fact that they felt the need to take symmetrical action, and that's the way they view it is that they were delayed in taking this action", he added. "We were clear that we didn't think that was going to be helpful to our efforts, but that's the decision they made".

Mr Tillerson is scheduled to participate in a US-Asean foreign ministerial meeting and a Lower Mekong Initiative ministerial meeting on Sunday, as well as a foreign ministerial meeting of the East Asia Summit and the Asean Regional Forum on Monday. He noted he plans to meet with Lavrov this weekend at diplomatic meetings in Manila.

Some shrugged at the news, noting that the US government has not always truly acted as a promoter of democracy on the world stage.

The United States will launch an unarmed Minuteman III ICBM on Wednesday from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California "to validate and verify the effectiveness, readiness and accuracy of the weapon system", according to the U.S. Air Force Global Strike Command. "We removed the remaining furniture, kitchen and BBQ items, and the playground set". The Russian leadership, in turn, stated that it restricted access for the United States to several of its diplomatic facilities in Russia and demanded that the staff of USA diplomatic missions in Russia be reduced by 755 people.

If nominated and confirmed, Brownfield will have a full plate; his responsibilities would include balancing the political tightrope of U.S. -Mexico relations under Trump, dealing with the roiling political crisis in Venezuela, managing the diplomatic end of renegotiations on the North American Free Trade Agreement, and helping cement the historic Colombian peace deal brokered previous year. Prior to that, he served as Fox Business Network's Washington correspondent.

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