MOSCOW (Reuters) - A chill in U.S.-Russian relations since the start of the Ukraine crisis is likely to last a long time, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Monday.
In a public lecture in which he criticised U.S. foreign policy, Lavrov said he hoped the relationship would start improving after hitting what he felt was rock bottom.
“There is always a temptation to find a metaphor, a word - for instance people ask me about a second Cold War, or about a return to the old Cold War. Of course, it is not a Cold War,” Lavrov said.
But he added: “This new period in our relations will be a lengthy one.”
Moscow and Washington differ on issues from human rights to arms control as well as over the crisis in Ukraine, in which the United States and the European Union have imposed sanctions on Russia and Moscow has restricted some Western food imports.
The United States accuses Russia of sending troops and arms to east Ukraine to help pro-Russian separatists fighting government forces, and Moscow accuses Washington of supporting a coup d‘etat in which a Ukrainian president sympathetic to Russia was overthrown. Each side denies the other’s accusations.
Reporting by Timothy Heritage, Editing by Maria Kiselyova