Russia, US hold working dinner to open Geneva talks

A top Russian diplomat predicted “difficult” talks with the United States this week after attending a working dinner with U.S. officials in Geneva on Sunday as part of the kickoff to a string of meetings in three European cities this week, with bilateral ties at a low over Russia’s military buildup near Ukraine.

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov and other Russian officials met for over two hours with U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman, the head of the U.S. delegation, and her team at the luxury residence of the U.S. ambassador to the Conference on Disarmament that overlooks Lake Geneva.

The dinner was a prelude to a broader discussion between the two teams at the U.S. mission in Geneva starting Monday — culminating a string of meetings both virtual and in person among U.S. officials, their Western allies, and Russian leaders in recent days and weeks as tensions over Russian pressure against Ukraine have grown.

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