MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Earlier media reports claimed US Ambassador to Holy See Kenneth Hackett urged Pope Francis, whom Russian President Vladimir Putin visited earlier in the day, to adopt a harsher anti-Russia stance.
"It is perhaps a blatant case of an attempt to suppress the sovereignty of other countries. You cannot describe it any other way."
From Russia's viewpoint, Putin's spokesman explained, Hackett's remarks were "absolutely inadmissible in international relations."
The US envoy reportedly answered a question at an unrelated briefing, where Hackett said "maybe this is an opportunity for the Holy Father to privately raise concerns."
Relations between Moscow and the West have suffered considerably since Crimeans voted in a referendum to rejoin Russia in March 2014, and the conflict in southeast Ukraine that erupted as a result of a political crisis there.