Russian diplomat, United States senator discuss bilateral relations and arms control issues

Erika Holt
August 9, 2018

A group of United States senators, on a visit to Moscow on Monday, said they have invited Russian lawmakers to Washington later this year in a bid to help ease tensions between the two countries. The US representatives also met with Chairman of the Federation Council Committee for Foreign Affairs Konstantin Kosachyov and Chairman of the State Duma Committee for Foreign Affairs Leonid Slutsky earlier on Monday. Paul said the two "agreed on the importance of continued dialogue". I invited the Russian Federation to send a delegation to the Capitol, and they have agreed to take this important next step.

The senator and other members of Congress are now in Moscow meeting with government officials.

Kosachev heads up the Russian equivalent of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, which Paul sits on.

The "main aim of the trip" was to "create a dialogue" and "improve relations" between Moscow and Washington, Paul added. "They're not going to admit it in the same way we're not going to admit we were involved in the Ukrainian elections or the Russian elections", he said.

Less than a month after President Donald Trump's meeting with Russian premier Vladimir Putin, Kentucky Sen.

Paul headed a US delegation, which includes member of the Texas State Senate Don Huffines and representatives of the Cato Institute, a public policy research organization.

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The delegation with Paul included Phillip Huffines, a Texas Republican who ran unsuccessfully in a primary race this spring, and Peter Goettler, president and CEO of the Cato Institute, the conservative Washington-based think tank.

Kosachev said the visit is especially valuable as some US representatives are attempting to treat all contacts with Russian politicians as toxic ones.

Congressman Thomas Massie (R-KY) told Breitbart News in an exclusive interview in July that America the world "will be better" off as a result of the Trump-Putin summit in Helsinki.

"I am one who believes in more engagement, that we need to have more cultural exchange, more exchange between our legislative bodies, more open lines of communication", Paul said.

When asked by CNN whether the issue of Russian interference came up, Paul said he had "general discussions about a lot of issues".

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