For its part, the U.S. Secretary Rex Tillerson said that the US will never accept "occupation and attempted annexation of Crimea". He promised that sanctions against Russia will remain in force until the settlement of the conflict around Ukraine. Recalling that the President of the United States Donald trump during the election campaign had advocated better relations with Russia, Tillerson said, "we can Have disagreements in other areas, but when one country invades another, it is difficult to ignore and move towards each other".

The head of us diplomacy called the conflict around Ukraine, the main obstacle to better relations with Moscow. "We gave Russia clear: we need to solve the problem of Ukraine, it is the most difficult single obstacle to normalizing relations".

On the eve Tillerson expressed the hope that his meeting with Lavrov in Vienna will help achieve progress in resolving the issue on granting UN peacekeepers in the Donbas a strong mandate. However, Lavrov called this idea an attempt to resolve the conflict in the East of Ukraine by force, which, according to observers, almost did not leave room for compromise.