Spokesman for the White House Josh Ernest touched upon the matter of sanctions against Russia. At the daily briefing for journalists Earnest was asked whether there was likelihood that Russia may be invited to a meeting of the Group of Seven, which will take place in June, thus, once again making it the Group of Eight, Censor.NET reports citing the Russian service of the Voice of America.
Earnest noted that this scenario is currently hard to imagine, since the U.S. set out a list of Russia's actions that cause concern. He stressed that in the relations with Russia, the United States, both publicly and privately, outlined its position on the steps Russia can take to avoid isolation.
The official noted that the Russian economy had deteriorated, both due to drop in energy prices, and as a result of the sanctions imposed by the United States, together with its European allies. He noted that the White House was ready to take certain steps to reduce or even lift sanctions if Russia fulfill its commitments made in the context of the implementation plan of the Minsk agreement. He added that Russia had a long way there since so far they have not fulfilled its obligations.
Earnest noted that he could not imagine how these steps could be taken before the next G& meeting but added that he would be glad to be wrong.