The European Union and the United States have agreed to coordinate efforts in addressing "Russia’s confrontational behavior," EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said at a news conference after talks with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in Brussels on Wednesday.
"We agreed to coordinate our efforts in addressing Russia’s confrontational behavior and encourage Russia to abandon this path," he said.
Borrell and Blinken released a joint statement after the talks, which once more lists "Russia's challenging behavior", including "disinformation; interference in electoral processes; malicious cyber activities."
"At the same time, both sides declared that they are ready to engage with Russia on issues of common interest and to encourage Russia to abandon confrontational approaches," the press release says, TASS reports.
After his visit to Moscow on February 4-6, Borrell abruptly changed his tone on Russia to negative. In Brussels, most politicians, experts, and members of the European Parliament called his visit a failure, accusing the diplomat of insufficient rigor, including during his final news conference with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.
The top European diplomat then said that the European Union and Russia held an open and honest dialogue on all issues of bilateral and international relations, including the struggle against the novel coronavirus pandemic and global climate change, the restoration of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action for the Iranian nuclear program, Ukraine, Brussels’ support for Alexey Navalny, and the expulsion of Western diplomats from Russia for participating in unauthorized protest demonstrations. Nevertheless, the following day he released another statement branding the news conference in Moscow as "aggressively-staged" and warning that the EU was set to impose more sanctions on Russia.