Russian envoy’s return depends on US policy: Official

Moscow, April 8 (IANS) The return of Russian Ambassador Anatoly Antonov to Washington will depend on US policy, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said here.

The envoy will not depart for Washington at any time soon, and Moscow is watching the steps the US will take towards normalising ties with Russia, Xinhua news agency quoted Ryabkov as saying in a statement on Wednesday.

Consultations between Russian authorities and Antonov are still going on, according to the Deputy Foreign Minister.

The Ambassador returned to Moscow amid worsening bilateral ties on March 22 after he was recalled following US President Joe Biden’s remarks on March 17 that Russia will “pay a price” for its alleged interference in the 2020 American election.

A US intelligence report released the previous day directly accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of ordering a wide-ranging influence operation to interfere in the election, intending to hurt Biden’s campaign.

In the ABC News interview, Biden also agreed with the interviewer’s claim that Putin was “a killer”.