Senior U.S. diplomat praises improved relations with Russia

Senior U.S. diplomat praises improved relations with Russia

The United States is satisfied with the recent progress in the relations with Russia and hopes to continue productive bilateral dialogue on many issues, a senior U.S. State Department official said, RIA Novosti reported.

"I have to say there is a contrast with our ability to cooperate with Russia not just two or three years ago but even a year ago," said Philip Gordon, Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs.

Speaking at the German Marshall Fund in Washington on Wednesday, Gordon said that Russia's vote in the UN Security Council in support of a new set of sanctions against Iran clearly showed that Moscow and Washington could effectively cooperate in global affairs.

"We have a common interest in dealing with Iran's nuclear program - we think Russia shares that interest," he said, adding that both countries were willing to broaden the range of issues of common interest.

Russia and the United States have been following the route of "resetting" their relations and ridding them of Cold War-era holdbacks since Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and his U.S. counterpart Barack Obama announced the new policy of bilateral ties last year.

Russia and the United States signed a new strategic arms reduction treaty in Prague on April 8. The new START treaty replaced the 1991 pact that expired in December and is expected to bring Moscow and Washington to a new level of cooperation in the field of nuclear disarmament and arms control.

The U.S. diplomat said now is the best time to resolve the remaining controversial issues in bilateral relations and eliminate all possible misunderstanding in the dialogue between the two countries.

The Russian president is expected to visit the United States on June 22-24 to boost Russian-U.S. cooperation in various spheres, including trade and the high-tech industry.

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