Mike Pompeo warns Russian Federation not to meddle in 2020 USA election

EU has cool welcome for Pompeo but Austrian minister dismisses danger of war

"Our elections are important and sacred and they must be free and fair". "I hope that now the necessary conditions are being created", Putin told Pompeo.

And apparently Putin's opinion puts him at odds with President Donald Trump, who's repeatedly yelled about the Russian Federation investigation being a "hoax".

LUCIAN KIM, BYLINE: Hi, Ari.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Russian leader Vladimir Putin have reached an agreement on Syria.

KIM: Yes, he did.

If Russia interfered, "it would put our relationship in an even worse place than it has been", Pompeo said.

He stated this at a joint press conference with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Sochi on May 14. And Pompeo told Lavrov he had come to Sochi because Trump is committed to a better relationship.

But the president later downplayed Moscow's role in the crisis after a phone call with Putin earlier this month.

"And here [in the EU] we need 27 countries to agree, it lasts for years and nothing happens", Putin said. The administration has been issuing some ominous warnings about Iran's behavior.

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United Nations inspectors have said Iran is complying with the deal, and Moscow last week denounced new U.S. sanctions on the country's mining industry, calling for new talks to save the nuclear accord. "Iran, after signing of the treaty, is the most verifiable and most transparent country in the world in this sense", he said. Sergey Lavrov said the Middle East is already tense enough and that Russian Federation would continue working with the Europeans and Chinese to get out of this crisis.

"We want every country interfering in Venezuela to cease doing that". These included Iran, Syria and Venezuela, where the United States supports opposition leader Juan Guaido as interim president and Russian Federation backs President Nicolas Maduro.

As well as the issue of interference in U.S. elections, the two men also clashed over Venezuela, with Lavrov sharply criticising Washington for trying to undermine President Nicolas Maduro, who Pompeo said must now step down in the face of economic crisis and large-scale protests against his rule. What did both sides have to say about that today?

"The domestic political atmosphere in the United States might seem to have become more favorable, " said Fyodor Lukyanov, a Russian global affairs analyst who has advised the Kremlin. American negotiators might believe Putin's price will go down if he sees Maduro as an increasingly poor investment.

"Democracy cannot be done by force".

SHAPIRO: So did they note any progress on any of these issues?

"There were no assurances from Pompeo", Putin's spokesman said.

The fact that the latest missile test-firing took place right at a time when US Special Representative for North Korea Stephen Biegun was visiting South Korea also indicates that Pyongyang is determined to pile pressure on Washington in order to force the issue over the US-North Korea talks.

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