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No secrets were passed to Trump: Lavrov

Published on 20 May. 2017 12:21 AM IST
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Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has dismissed U.S. press reports that President Donald Trump passed classified information to him when they met recently in the White House.
During a working visit to Cyprus, Lavrov said that what Trump actually told him was that Islamic State (IS) terrorists were capable of staffing untraceable explosives in laptops.  “As far as I can recall, maybe one month or two months before, the Trump administration had an official ban on laptops on airlines from seven Middle Eastern countries ... So if you are talking about that, I see no secret here,” Lavrov told reporters in Nicosia during a joint news conference with Cypriot foreign minister Ioannis Kasoulides. Lavrov’s comments on the issue were the first since his meeting with Trump and after allegations were made by two U.S. officials on May 15 that the U.S. President had divulged secrets to Lavrov about planned IS operations.
Lavrov arrived in Nicosia on Thursday to attend a foreign ministers’ meeting of the Council of Europe at the end of Cyprus’s presidency this month.
At the press conference, Lavrov also said Russia would like to improve its relations with the European Union (EU).
“The current state of relations is beneficial to neither side,” he said, expressing hope for a re-evaluation of the situation that would lead to a “mutually-beneficial re-engagement”.
He said the relationship must be based on mutual respect and chided Brussels for playing “a one-way street game” on the issue.
Speaking about Ukraine, the issue that brought EU sanctions on Russia, Lavrov said he was in favor of fully implementing the Minsk agreement, blaming Kiev for not applying the accord.
“Recent action by the Ukrainian authorities shows that it is either not willing or incapable of doing so,” Lavrov added.

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