Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov slams Vancouver diplomatic summit on Korean peninsula

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      The Russian government's senior diplomat will not be in Vancouver on today and tomorrow (January 15 and January 16) for an international gathering about security on the Korean peninsula.

      In a briefing with reporters, Sergei Lavrov called the meeting of 16 foreign ministers "destructive".

      The Vancouver summit is being hosted by Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland and U.S. secretary of state Rex Tillerson.

      The Russian foreign minister also rejected the likelihood of it having any impact without the presence of his country or China, which have land borders with North Korea.

      And he ridiculed the presence of minor players such as Greece, Belgium, Colombia, and Luxembourg.

      "What do they have to do with current efforts to resolve the Korean Peninsula issue?" Lavrov said, according to the Russian news agency TASS.

      According to a report in the U.K-based Independent, Lavrov also claimed at his media briefing that the United States is "devaluing" international law and institutions. He accused the Trump administration of "using the language of diktat and ultimatum".

      Today, the first summit-related event will be a photo oppportunity for the media featuring Freeland and South Korean foreign affairs minister Kang Kyung-wha.

      An official welcoming dinner, hosted by Freeland and Tillerson, will be held at 7 p.m. for the delegations in Vancouver. Also in attendance will be Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan and U.S. secretary of defense James Mattis.

      The dinner will not be open to the media.