Putin has High Hopes for New US Ambassador to Russia
The Kremlin hopes that the US Embassy in Moscow, led by the new Ambassador Jon Huntsman (57), will make its contribution to mending relations between the two countries damaged by Washington’s moves, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters earlier today.
The spokesman reiterated that President Vladimir Putin is a consistent advocate of bringing Russian-US relations back on track, building ties and developing bilateral cooperation, Russian news agency TASS reports.
"He [President Putin] believes this is not only in the interest of the peoples of our two countries, but also in the interest of the whole world. However, he has repeatedly stressed that it is, unfortunately, impossible to put these intentions into practice alone, without a partner. At the moment, certain problems exist with reciprocity," the spokesman said.
"However, we do of course hope that when led by a new ambassador, the US diplomatic mission will at least be able to make a substantial contribution to repairing the damage to our relations from Washington’s actions," the Kremlin spokesman said.
The former Governor of Utah, Jon Meade Huntsman Jr, arrived in Moscow yesterday. He will present his credentials to President Vladimir Putin at a ceremony at the Kremlin today.
Huntsman, who in May 2011 announced his plan to fight for nomination as the Republican candidate for presidency, last month testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that there is "no question" that Moscow meddled in the election. His perspective stands in stark contrast to Trump’s statements, in which he called the alledged Russian disruption a "hoax".
The position of United States' Ambassador to Russia was until recently held by John F. Tefft, a career Officer of the U.S. Foreign Service who was recalled from retirement in September, 2014 to serve his fourth ambassadorship.
Huntsman, who holds a bachelor’s degree in international politics, has previously worked in the administrations of five US Presidents. In 1992, at the age of 32, he led the US' diplomatic mission to Singapore, becoming the youngest American Ambassador anywhere for the past 100 years, according to the TASS-report.
A few days ago, the American magazine Politico.com reported that in addition to Huntsman, the Senate has confirmed Wess Mitchell as the Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs, a critical post for U.S.-Russian diplomatic efforts.