His words suggested that U.S. officials will wait to see whether there will be any new flexibility from Russia on major U.S.-Russian issues when a delegation of top Russian officials meets with their U.S. counterparts in Washington next week. If they do not, U.S. officials may scale back or cancel the meeting.
Experts said a cancellation of the meeting would likely bring a Russian reaction, and could lead to a U.S. disengagement from a relationship with Russia after four years of trying to strengthen it.
“We’re headed for a very rocky period in U.S.-Russian relations, make no mistake,” said Andrew Weiss, who was a White House expert on Russia during the Clinton administration and is now vice president for studies at the
U.S. officials have been demanding for weeks that Russia return Snowden, a former intelligence contractor wanted by the United States for leaking details of a
Republican senators have been suggesting that Obama should respond more strongly to Russia’s refusal to release Snowden. Sen.
Snowden's lawyer said Snowden's new status will last for one year, and allows him to move freely within the country.