MOSCOW, March 31 (Xinhua) -- Washington uses nothing but ultimatums and then sanctions in dealing with foreign affairs, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said in a recent interview。
"In U.S. diplomacy, I now see nothing but ultimatums and then sanctions in case the ultimatums are not met," Lavrov told a TV program, the transcript of which was published by the foreign ministry on Sunday.
"Other tools have somehow disappeared from the arsenal of U。S。 diplomacy, and this is sad," he said, commenting on U。S。 Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's recent threat of more anti-Russian measures over Ukraine。
"If you work as the head of the foreign affairs department, then you need to look for diplomatic approaches to various problems," Lavrov said.
Pompeo said on Wednesday that the North Atlantic Treaty Organization members will possibly announce joint actions against Moscow next week in response to Russia's steps in Crimea, the Sea of Azov and the region.
Relations between Kiev and Moscow soured rapidly after Russia incorporated Crimea in 2014 following a local referendum, which Ukraine and Western countries refused to recognize and they have slapped rounds of sanctions against Russia。
In November, three Ukrainian naval ships bound for the Sea of Azov were shot at and seized near the Kerch Strait by Russian forces for allegedly violating the Russian border.
Moscow has called the incident a political provocation staged by Ukraine to stir up anti-Russian sentiment ahead of the March 31 presidential election, while Kiev has accused Russia of "aggressive actions."