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Bolton Met Officials in Moscow for ‘Strategic Dialogue,’ with Putin Meeting Set for Oct. 23

Oct. 22, 2018 (EIRNS)—The expected Oct. 23 meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton was still being prepared, according to Putin’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov, today, even after President Donald Trump’s Oct. 20 statement that the U.S. would be withdrawing from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty.

“This meeting is being prepared,” Peskov told reporters when asked whether Putin’s schedule would be changed. Peskov had said earlier, that Putin would want clarification from Bolton, of the U.S. stance. According to Radio Free Europe, Peskov said that Russia wants to hear “some kind of explanation” of U.S. plans. “This is a question of strategic security. And I again repeat: such intentions are capable of making the world more dangerous.” Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov likewise expressed the need for Bolton to give clarification.

Bolton is in Moscow for pre-scheduled meetings with Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, and, reportedly, also with Defense Secretary Sergei Shoigu. These meetings are a part of the implementation of the process of U.S.-Russia strategic dialogue, which was mandated from the June Helsinki meeting between Trump and Putin. Bolton had a similar round of meetings on Aug. 23.

After arriving in Moscow yesterday, on Oct. 21, this morning Bolton met with Patrushev. Following this, the Russian Security Council spokesman gave a description of the Bolton-Patrushev meeting, in terms of the ongoing process of strategic dialogue. The same kind of summary was given by the Russian Foreign Ministry, after Bolton met with Lavrov.

Russian Security Council spokesman Yevgeny Anoshin told Sputnik, that in the Patrushev-Bolton meeting

“The prospects for building a dialogue between Moscow and Washington on strategic issues were discussed. The sides noted the importance of continuing contacts at the level of security councils, as well as through a number of ministries and departments of the two countries, on security issues.”

After Bolton met with Lavrov, the Russian Foreign Ministry stated that the two men had discussed

“the prospect of interaction between our countries, including in the interests of settling regional conflicts, effectively fighting against terrorism, and the maintenance of strategic stability.”

Meantime, President Donald Trump again spoke with reporters today about U.S. intentions on the INF treaty. Bolton gave late-night commentary to the media in Moscow.

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