19 Nov 2021 12:38

U.S. congressmen's draft denying Putin recognition as president after 2024 interferes in Russian internal affairs - Duma's Slutsky

MOSCOW. Nov 19 (Interfax) - A resolution drafted by U.S. congressmen Steve Cohen and Joe Wilson, saying that any attempt of Russian President Vladimir Putin "to remain in office beyond May 7, 2024, shall warrant non-recognition on the part of the United States," is an act of direct interference in Russian internal affairs, State Duma Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Leonid Slutsky said.

"The calls for non-recognition of Vladimir Putin as the head of state in the event of his decision to run for that position and victory in the election are nothing but direct, unceremonious interference in Russian internal affairs. We have never allowed that to happen, and rest assured we will not allow that to anyone," Slutsky said on Telegram on Friday.

The resolution drafted by congressmen Cohen and Wilson is "yet another provocation, populism, and political PR, which is clearly not a result of either high intelligence or competence," he said.

"Should the lower house of the Congress pass the resolution, even though it is advisory, that will deal a serious blow to the process of possible recovery of Russian-U.S. inter-parliamentary cooperation (and cooperation as a whole)," Slutsky said.

Meanwhile, Yury Rogulev, president of the Roosevelt Foundation for the Study of the United States at Moscow State University, said he viewed the Cohen-Wilson draft as a reflection of internal political struggle in the United States.

"This is not the first time that we see Russia become a subject of domestic political struggle in the United States. This draft resolution is a clear example of a new round of escalation of this struggle related to the mid-term congressional elections in 2022," Rogulev told Interfax.

Obviously, the initiative is irrelevant from the legal point of view, and Washington cannot afford to pass the draft either now or in the future, he said.

"It is clear to everyone that such things are untenable in relations with Russia from the legal angle. Naturally, this cannot apply to direct contacts between Washington and Moscow. Obviously, the Americans cannot and will not be able to act this way on the Russian track," the expert said.

Congressmen Steve Cohen and Joe Wilson have submitted a draft resolution, which says that "any attempt by the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin to remain in office beyond May 7, 2024, shall warrant non-recognition on the part of the United States," to the House of Congress.

If approved, the resolution will be advisory.