Steven Seagal named Russian special envoy to US

Actor Steven Seagal attends the SMASH Global V pre Oscar fight at Taglyan Complex in Los Angeles California

Actor Steven Seagal attends the SMASH Global V pre Oscar fight at Taglyan Complex in Los Angeles California

Seagal, an outspoken supporter of Russian President Vladimir Putin, has been a Russian citizen since 2016.

The US martial artist and action movie star says he takes his appointment as Russia's special envoy to US "very seriously".

Russia's Foreign Ministry said on Saturday it had made U.S. actor Steven Seagal its special representative for Russian-U.S. humanitarian ties, a role it said was meant to deepen cultural, art and youth ties between the two countries.

"I am deeply humbled and honored to have been appointed as a special representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry in charge of Russian and American Humanitarian ties. hope we can strive for peace, harmony and positive results in the world".

According to the statement, his unpaid posting will be to promote intercontinental relations "in the humanitarian sphere", and will be similar to the United Nations' goodwill ambassador positions.

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"I've always had a very strong desire to do all I can to help improve Russian-American relations", RT cited Seagal as saying.

He has previously hung out with Russia's Putin, a fellow martial arts fan.

CNN has reached out Seagal's spokesperson for comment. Also that year, California Republican Rep. Dana Rohrabacher credited Seagal with facilitating meetings for a congressional delegation that visited Russian Federation in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombings to investigate the suspects' backgrounds and discuss intelligence sharing issues. Seagal once referred to Putin as "one of the great living world leaders". Both countries are at odds over Syria and Ukraine and there is still the issue of Russian hackers tampering with the 2016 elections in an effort to further divide the United States.

Seagal's new role was noted by Kremlin-backed TV station RT, who noted Seagal as welcoming the appointment. Seagal says: "I'll never, ever falter".

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