Mexico City: US Secretary of State John Kerry on Wednesday downplayed the impact of a massive energy deal between Russia and China, saying it has no repercussions in the Ukraine crisis.
Kerry said the $400 billion deal was "not a sudden response" to events in Ukraine, adding that the ex-Soviet state was in a "constructive moment" that could allow Ukrainians to determine their futures.
"I don`t personally think that Russia signing a deal with China for gas that they have been working on for 10 years has any impact on what is about to happen in Ukraine," Kerry said during a visit to Mexico.
Earlier, the presidents of Russia and China witnessed the signing of gas deal at a time that the Ukraine crisis threatens Russian energy exports to Europe.
The agreement represents a turn to the east by Moscow at a moment when its geopolitical assertiveness, particularly the takeover of Crimea, has seen it heavily criticized by the West.
Kerry, meanwhile, welcomed Russian President Vladimir Putin`s decision to withdraw troops stationed along the border with Ukraine.
"If that happens, and we are watching carefully, that`s extremely constructive, it`s positive," Kerry said.
"We in fact are in a good moment, not a moment of one party outwinning another, but at a constructive moment where there is the possibility of the people of Ukraine being able to determine their future, and all of us trying to find a way to further de-escalate this crisis."