December 25, 2017 / 6:57 AM / in a year

Russia's Lavrov calls on U.S. and North Korea to start talks: RIA

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov attends a meeting with Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu and U.N. special envoy on Syria Staffan de Mistura in Moscow, Russia December 21, 2017. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov called on Monday for the United States and North Korea to start negotiations, the RIA news agency reported.

Lavrov was cited as saying that Russia was ready to facilitate such negotiations.

Moscow has long called for Washington and Pyongyang to hold talks aimed at de-escalating tensions around North Korea’s nuclear and missile program.

North Korea’s foreign ministry said on Sunday that the latest U.N. sanctions against North Korea were an act of war and tantamount to a complete economic blockade against it.

Reporting by Polina Devitt; Writing by Polina Ivanova; Editing by Andrew Osborn

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