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Pompeo tells Russia: no more election interference

AP  |  Sochi 

On his first trip to as U.S. Secretary of State, said Tuesday that he warned his Russian counterpart against any "unacceptable" Russian meddling in U.S. elections.

At a conference following three hours of meetings, said he told Russian added than any such action by the Russians in the 2020 elections "would put our relationship in an even worse place than it has been."

Both diplomats said the meeting in the resort city of covered an array of issues that have heightened tensions between and These included Iran, and Venezuela, where the supports as interim and backs

Lavrov defended Russia's position and said the threats is receiving from officials coupled with Guaido's seeming support for a foreign military intervention, "bear no relation to democracy." was a key point of discussion amid rising tensions between and Last week, the sent an and bombers to the in response to intelligence that was planning attacks on American interests.

"We fundamentally don't seek a war with Iran," said.

Lavrov said is hoping for a positive response from the about extending the New START arms control treaty, which is due to expire in 2021, "but we really have some concerns which are related to the re-equipping of launchers of Trident submarines and heavy bombers announced by the United States." A day after said he would meet with Russian President at the Group of 20 summit of leaders in in June, Lavrov said it has not received a formal proposal.

"If such a proposal is received, we will respond to it in a positive way," he said. Pompeo and Lavrov were to brief Putin on their talks in the evening.

At the start of their meeting, Lavrov said both countries are overdue to dispel "suspicions and prejudices" and to "start building a new constructive framework" of how Russia and the U.S see each other.

Pompeo said in televised remarks at the meeting on Tuesday that he came to Russia because President was "committed to improve this relationship" despite differences between the United States and Russia Syria, Iran, the crisis in and other matters.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, May 15 2019. 00:00 IST
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