WASHINGTON (CBSMiami) – During his campaign, then President-elect Donald Trump pledged that he would have a much better relationship with Russia than President Barack Obama had. But so far, it appears the two countries are growing further apart.
Thursday morning he took to Twitter to offer words of reassurance.
Things will work out fine between the U.S.A. and Russia. At the right time everyone will come to their senses & there will be lasting peace!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 13, 2017
The tweet stands in stark contrast to the message he delivered from the East Room of the White House on Wednesday afternoon.
“Right now we’re not getting along with Russia at all. We may be at an all-time low in terms of a relationship with Russia,” said Trump.
On Wednesday, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson had a private, two-hour meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, he didn’t sound very optimistic afterward.
“There is a low level of trust between our two countries,” he said.
The biggest wedge in the relationship is Russia’s continued support for Syrian leader Bashar Al-Assad. Secretary Tillerson told President Putin peace cannot happen in Syria while Assad is still in power.
“Russia, as their closest ally in the conflict, perhaps has the best means of helping Assad recognize this reality,” said Tillerson.
Assad has denied his government was behind last week’s chemical weapons attack that killed more than 80 people.
“It’s fabrication. We don’t have an arsenal, we’re not going to use it. And you have many indications if you don’t have proof, because no-one has concrete information or evidences,” said Assad.
In retaliation, the U.S. bombed the Syrian air base used to launch the chemical weapons attack.
A Kremlin spokesman said the meeting between President Putin and Secretary Tillerson had been “fairly constructive” and that the two agreed to keep open lines of communication between Washington and Moscow.