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Top Russian and US diplomats attended a working dinner in Geneva on Sunday night to discuss the Ukrainian crisis.
“Tomorrow we won’t be wasting our time in vain,” Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov stated upon leaving the dinner, commenting on the two-hour discussion held at the residence of the US ambassador to the Conference on Disarmament.
Ryabkov said that although “the conversation was complex,” it was “business-like in principle,” and that he will stay optimistic regarding the Monday negotiations. The deputy former minister could be hear telling journalists off camera that he would disclose more details once the meeting is concluded.
Ryabkov and Deputy Defence Minister Alexander Fomin spoke with Deputy Secretary Wendy Sherman, accompanied by Director of Operations of the Joint Staff, Lieutenant General James Mingus.
The US State Department issued a statement stating that Washington would welcome genuine progress through diplomacy.
The formal talks will take place on Monday and focus on Russia-US bilateral issues, particularly regarding Ukraine.
SOT, Sergey Ryabkov, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister (Russian): [Journalist asking “How was the meeting?”] “(The meeting was) Wonderful. We have been immersed into the matter of the upcoming work. However the conversation was complex, it could not be easy. It was businesslike in principle. I believe we’ll not be wasting our time in vain tomorrow. I’m never losing my optimism as I’m always being guided by optimism. Thank you.”
Video ID: 20220110-007