New York: Russian Ambassador to the United States, Sergey Kislyak, has said that ties between the two countries were held hostage to political infighting in Washington, however, adding there was hope for improvement.
"The Russia-US bilateral relations have fallen victim to internal political fighting in this country (the US) and I am saddened to see that the sacrifice is so readily made," Sputnik quoted the diplomat as saying.
Kislyak, whose name has been embroiled in the US media over his contacts with President Donald Trump's team during the 2016 presidential campaign, said Moscow had patience to wait it out.
"In the words of our president, we have enough patience, we'll wait. When the US is ready for serious work on issues that bring us together in a manner that will benefit long-term interests of both Russia and the US, the relationship will undoubtedly get better. There is optimism," he said.
He, however, refused to comment on allegations that he met with Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner prior to his appointment to the post of senior advisor.
"I do not comment on my daily contacts, this is our policy and it applies not only to talks with Kushner but also to all our day-to-day negotiations," he said.
The Washington Post reported last week that Kushner and former national security advisor Michael Flynn met with Kislyak last December in Trump Tower to discuss setting up a secure communication channel to shield pre-inauguration talks from US intelligence eavesdropping.
On Friday, Russian President Vladimir Putin commented on the issue, saying that US officials have "lost their mind," as it is an ambassador's job to meet with people.