Tillerson and Lavrov will Meet in Manila this Weekend

He was unable to show that the US has fulfilled President Donald Trump's objective of a new, more cooperative relationship between the former Cold War foes, noting only modest efforts in Syria as a sign the nations share some common goals.

United States Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will travel to Manila, Bangkok, and Kuala Lumpur August 5 - 9, the US Embassy in Manila said Wednesday.

One of the key things Russian Federation wants is for the U.S.to return two diplomatic properties that were seized late previous year under Obama administration sanctions in retaliation for Russia's interference in the election.

While Tillerson will no doubt seek to make progress the Trump administration's top priorities, at the outset it is important to recognize that in engaging regional interlocutors, he, like other top officials, is likely to face a barrage of questions about the administration's approach to Asia and the wider world.

Despite his displeasure with the sanctions, Tillerson said of the president, "all indications are he will sign that bill".

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told reporters Tuesday that he warned Russian President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov that the relationship between the US and Moscow was bad and could get worse, POLITICO reports. At a press briefing on Tuesday, Tillerson also reiterated that the US does not want to bring about a regime change or collapse in the North.

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Congress has given $80 million to the State Department to fight Russian propaganda and misinformation, but Secretary of State Rex Tillerson reportedly is reluctant to put it to use.

Earlier on Tuesday, a leading Republican senator, Lindsey Graham, said Trump had told him he was willing to go to war with North Korea "if they continued to try to hit America with an ICBM".

At the White House, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Tuesday that Trump would sign the sanctions bill into law, but she could not say when that would happen.

But the great power rivals remain divided over Russia's intervention in Ukraine, US sanctions against Kremlin allies and Moscow's support for Bashar al-Assad's Syrian regime. Officials in the building and lawmakers on Capitol Hill want Tillerson to spend the money that's sitting there. The two, he said, have already spoken since Sunday's actions.

In the meantime, Tillerson plans to meet Lavrov in Manila on the sidelines of an ASEAN ministerial meeting. "Does it make our lives more hard?"

"I think it's important to recognize that any leader of any country has their whole population watching them as well, and President Putin has his population of Russian Federation watching him", Tillerson said.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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