'Aggressive US rhetoric' on North Korea unacceptable, Russian FM Lavrov says

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov believes that the main problem in relations with the United States is the "Russo-phobic hysteria" that has prevailed in Washington.

Moscow calls on United States and allies to refrain from provoking tensions and exerting "maximum pressure" on Pyongyang.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpHouse Democrat slams Donald Trump Jr. for "serious case of amnesia" after testimony Skier Lindsey Vonn: I don't want to represent Trump at Olympics Poll: 4 in 10 Republicans think senior Trump advisers had improper dealings with Russia MORE said he would not be willing to start diplomatic talks unless North Korea agrees to give up its pursuit of nuclear weapons.

This may open the way for the de-escalation of tensions between the U.S. and North Korea, Peskov added.

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The two diplomats spoke by phone on December 26 and "shared a common opinion that the nuclear-missile developments in [North Korea] violate the demands of the United Nations Security Council", according to a statement from the Russian Foreign Ministry.

The measures order North Koreans working overseas to return home within two years and ban almost 90 percent of refined petroleum exports to the country. Among other countries which supported the move was China, a lone major ally of the North Korean regime in the region.

Lavrov pointed out contacts between Russian President Vladimir Putin and his USA counterpart Donald Trump have recently become quite intense, covering a wide range of bilateral and global topics.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and the White House have sent mixed messages regarding the administration's stance toward North Korea after Pyongyang launched an intercontinental ballistic missile late last month.

This lack of diplomacy may be the reason behind the rise in North Korean missile tests and contentious rhetoric at the United Nations and other global forums.


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