Russia's Participation In San Francisco Summit 'Consistent With U.S. Obligations As Host', State Dept Says

The United States on Tuesday defended its decision to allow Russia's EU-sanctioned Deputy Prime Minister Alexei Overchuk to represent the Kremlin at this week's high-level Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in San Francisco, despite U.S. efforts to isolate Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine, TURAN's Washington correspondent reporters.

"... I will let the EU speak to their sanctions. I will say that as the host of APEC, we have a responsibility... We take our host obligation responsibility – and that includes hosting officials from all the members of APEC, but we do it consistent with U.S. sanctions policy and rules and regulations," State Department's Spokesperson Matthew Miller told a daily briefing when responding to TURAN's questions.

Unlike Vladimir Putin and other Russian leaders, Overchuk is not specifically under U.S. sanctions, although he is under a variety of Western sanctions including from the EU.

Asked by TURAN whether his visit to the U.S. violates EU sanctions, Miller said: "I’m not going to get into technical sanctions questions.  I will say we have an obligation as the host."

He went on to add.  "... [O]ne of the things about diplomacy is you attend a lot of meetings with people whose policies you object to, and sometimes you object to things that they’ve done, but we have a responsibility to conduct diplomacy on behalf of the United States."

According to the White House, President Joe Biden and the First Lady will this evening host a welcome reception for APEC Leaders in San Francisco.

The summit will officially kick off tomorrow as Bidem will participate in a family photo with APEC economies and guest economies, and will host an APEC Informal Dialogue and Working Lunch. He will then deliver remarks and participate in the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework family photo.

On Friday, Biden will host the APEC Leaders Retreat and will formally transfer the APEC Chair to President Boluarte of Peru.

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