Russia-U.S. close cooperation on counterterrorism has saved lives of citizens from all across the world, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said.
According to him, he has "worked very closely" with Russia on counterterrorism. "We worked very closely together,” Pompeo said in an interview with The Daily Signal.
"I am confident that we saved American lives as a result of that close cooperation and the work that we did together. I’m equally confident that we’ve saved Russian lives as well and, frankly, lives of citizens from all across the world, by sharing our efforts on counterterrorism," the Secretary of State stressed.
Pompeo also noted that in every relationship there is an element that says these are the things that the sides disagree on, and these are the places that the sides can find a set of overlapping interests even though their values are "deeply different."
Director of the Institute of Political Studies Sergei Markov, speaking to Vestnik Kavkaza, noted that Pompeo’s statement does not mean any change in U.S. aggressive policy towards Russia. "No matter what Pompeo says, Washington’s approach remains the same. Its essence is to limit Russia's capabilities in the international arena, forcibly desecrate Ukraine, prepare and finance a project to overthrow President Vladimir Putin - but at the same time cooperate with Moscow where it is profitable for Washington," he explained.
"A typical example is the purchase of Russian RD-180 rocket engines, for which exceptions to the sanctions were made. And in general, where they need it, they cancel the sanctions against Russia, and cooperate in the fight against terrorism, which they really need. One more example - the meetings took place before last year’s FIFA World Cup, at which special services agreed that there should be no manifestations of anti-American sentiment in society. So the United States combines cooperation with Russia and pressure on it," Sergei Markov stressed.
The senior research fellow at the European Research Centre of the International Relations Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Vladimir Olenchenko, on the contrary, suggested that Pompeo’s statement could be a conciliatory signal from Washington. "Recently, an employee of a company affiliated with Rostec was detained in Naples on the U.S. instructions. Therefore, Pompeo’s words can be interpreted as an attempt to demonstrate readiness to discuss this topic. Also it cannot be excluded that the statement was addressed to an internal American audience to show that the current administration uses not only instruments of pressure on Russia, but also instruments of cooperation," he said.
"Russian-American relations have long been waiting for positive practical steps. If Pompeo’s speech is actually addressed to the global space, then Russia may expect some steps from the Americans, at least not to aggravate relations further," the senior research fellow at the European Research Centre of the International Relations Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences added