16 August 2022
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1626 days have passed since the Salisbury incident - no credible information or response from the British authorities                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     1618 days have passed since the death of Nikolay Glushkov on British soil - no credible information or response from the British authorities

SPEECHES, INTERVIEWS, ARTICLES

22.07.2022

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s statements and answers to media questions at a joint news conference following talks with Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Hungary Peter Szijjarto, Moscow, July 21, 2022

Ladies and gentlemen,

My Hungarian colleague Peter Szijjarto and I held trust-based and meaningful talks in a businesslike atmosphere. We discussed in detail the key issues of bilateral cooperation, primarily, the implementation of the agreements reached by President of Russia Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister of Hungary Viktor Orban, in particular, at their last meeting on February 1 of this year.

We paid much attention to implementing major joint projects in energy, transport and other areas. We agreed that due to smooth teamwork and supportive mechanisms for bilateral cooperation, we managed to overcome the decline in bilateral trade and substantially increase trade – by more than 25 percent – despite the difficult sanitary-epidemiological situation in 2021.  

We reaffirmed our desire to continue the Paks NPP expansion project as planned with the assistance of the Rosatom State Corporation. The signed bilateral agreements and contracts include the entire life cycle of the NPP – from construction to fuel supply, and technical maintenance. We consider this project strategic in both scale and in terms of high-tech. We are steadily carrying out Russian hydrocarbon export projects. Implementation of the 2021 long-term contracts for natural gas exports from Russia to Hungary fully meet the interests of our countries. Today, our colleagues talked about the Hungarian government’s interest in buying more gas this year. This request will be immediately reported and reviewed. For our part, we emphasised that the overtly Russophobic policy of Washington and Brussels is impeding the further development of our practical cooperation. It provides for the unrestrained buildup of sanctions without a realistic analysis of the consequences for the countries that are imposing these sanctions. Naturally, we do not want such things to interfere with our cooperation. We will be searching for and finding solutions that will make our cooperation independent of these whims and attempts to punish us in every area.

We went over a range of international issues focusing, obviously, on the situation in Ukraine and related developments. The Russian Federation is clear about the special military operation’s goals and objectives. We are prepared to provide additional clarification on every nuance and aspect of the situation as it unfolds. We believe that at some point our Western neighbours will come to realise the utter futility and danger of flooding Ukraine with modern weapons and encouraging the Ukrainian regime to press on with its insane actions and armed attacks on civilians and their own citizens. We see that a biased approach is dominating the position of Brussels, Washington and most European capitals. I hope that real life will eventually make them look at the facts objectively, drop their made-up confrontational tactics and strategies and focus on the European problems at hand.

I want to emphasise the fact that we are cooperating closely with Hungary in other areas of international politics, including at the UN and the OSCE. We share the understanding that Hungary and Russia are guided by their own national interests, but are interested in finding solutions to issues that concern both sides and that can uphold these national interests without hurting our partners.

I appreciate our relations. Today’s talks have confirmed their long-term and strategic nature. We will work to expand them in every possible way.

Question: Over the past year, we can see a trend that is dividing the European countries into two groups: the countries that follow Brussels’ policy and the countries that act in their national interests, like Hungary, for example. The latter often win. Don’t you think that the EU in its current form hinders the development of its member countries more than it contributes to it?

Sergey Lavrov: I’m not going to dig deep into the EU’s internal development agenda. We read what is written about it. We hear what they say, including in the EU member countries. I can only state that the situation isn’t simple.

There is an ongoing battle. The European bureaucracy wants to subjugate everything and everyone, including national governments, dictate the terms and cut short any dissent. On the other hand, some member countries want to understand how much of its mandate it is using for their benefit, and how much of it represents abuse and is a matter of concern. This is the EU’s internal matter.

I want to make one simple thing clear. We are now seeing the reaction of the West (primarily, that of Brussels and many European capitals) to what is happening in Ukraine. Let me remind you that for many years, in our relations with the European Union, we have been pushing to create an equal and mutually beneficial architecture, including on foreign policy issues. We had some success, but the EU has always been haughty about our attempts to build a balance of interests, preferring instead to make decisions on its own and then impose them on us as the ultimate truth.

The same goes for Ukraine. This didn’t start in February. There was a coup. Right before that, EU representatives (France, Germany and Poland) guaranteed that there would be an agreement between the Ukrainian president and the opposition and signed the corresponding guarantees. The next morning, these guarantees were trampled on and torn apart, and the EU said nothing. It did not call on the putschists to honour the obligations signed by the EU.

The Minsk agreements were signed a year later. France and Germany were also guarantors, but Kiev bluntly refused to fulfil the agreements. Recently, Petr Poroshenko admitted that he had signed them but had no intention of honouring them. He explained that it was necessary to gain time for Ukraine to receive new weapons. An open and cynical statement. At that time, the EU tacitly connived in the subversion of the Minsk agreements by Kiev. Likewise, there was no response to Poroshenko’s candid admission. This is a disgrace for serious states that want to deal with important foreign policy challenges.

Now we are hearing hysterical statements about the violation of all thinkable standards of international humanitarian law and about the killing of people. This is true, people are dying, but it is necessary to face the truth and stop brushing aside the facts showing that people are primarily killed by the absolutely senseless shelling of civilian districts in Donbass and other parts of Ukraine by the Ukrainian armed forces and nationalist battalions. Second, I would like to ask the journalists (this is easy to do in our IT age) to look at how the EU reacted over the past eight years to the deaths of thousands of civilians due to shelling by the Ukrainian authorities at a time when the Minsk agreements were still valid and gave hope for peace in Ukraine sometime in the future. There was no response at all. They just said that this was their country and they had the right to not engage in any dialogue with Donetsk and Lugansk. None of us has heard any condemnation of what the Ukrainian military was doing.

This attitude to one’s own guarantees as regards the Minsk agreements does not apply just to Ukraine. The EU and its bureaucrats behaved exactly the same way as regards the Kosovo problem. Almost 10 years ago, the EU started acting as a mediator between Pristina and Belgrade at the request of the UN General Assembly. A document on creating a community of Serb-majority municipalities in Kosovo was coordinated in 2013 following these talks. Under the plan, it was decided to establish municipalities in the north of the territory that was mostly populated by Serbs. This was done to grant Serbs elementary rights in Kosovo – language, religion, culture, and economic ties with Serbia. The Minsk agreements contained almost the same provisions on the rights of Donbass in the state of Ukraine.

Pristina buried the agreement on the community of Serb municipalities. The EU has not expressed its attitude towards this outrageous behavior by its mentees.

I have the right to talk about the EU’s foreign policy because they were active in areas that are part of the international community agenda. It is sad to see how the EU is following the US-specified road – the collective West must be united; no step back, left or right; only forward to where their senior partner points.

I can only hope that the EU can overcome the current difficulties. Nobody is interested in a crisis in Europe. There are countries emphasising that their policy will be determined by their own national interests. They do not want to lose their national identity, culture, religion and traditions, including how to bring up children in families. I hope this fair and natural desire will prevail and be respected. This is the main point today.

 

https://mid.ru/ru/foreign_policy/news/1823197/?lang=en 




LATEST EVENTS

01.08.2022 - Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s telephone conversation with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, 29 July, 2022

The Foreign Minister drew the Secretary of State’s attention to the fact that the continued arming of the armed forces of Ukraine and nationalist battalions with US and NATO weapons, which are being used against civilians on a large scale, is only prolonging the agony of the Kiev regime by dragging out the conflict and increasing the number of victims. Mr Lavrov stressed that the armed forces of Russia strictly observe the norms of international law and that Russia has engaged in consistent efforts to restore peaceful life on the territories that it is liberating.


01.08.2022 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s statement and answers to media questions following a meeting of the SCO Foreign Ministers Council, Tashkent, July 29, 2022

The African countries – and they are not alone because our other interlocutors, for example, our colleagues in the SCO, with whom we met yesterday and today – understand well that any member of the international community who behaves in a way that does not suit Americans or who meets with their disapproval could face sanctions. Everyone has a deep understanding of this. What can be done? Today, we have agreed to submit proposals for the consideration of the leaders of our countries on taking concrete steps towards switching to payments in national currencies.


29.07.2022 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s opening remarks at a meeting with Foreign Minister of the People's Republic of China Wang Yi, Tashkent, July 28, 2022

We see the world becoming more diverse and balanced with a growing number of truly inclusive interaction formats coming to the fore. This evolution is backed by multiple countries, including Russia, China and most countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America, which seek to pursue independent policies. We act as a team with our Chinese partners to support these processes and to advocate peace and order based on international law, genuine multilateralism and the centrality of the UN and the UN Security Council.


28.07.2022 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks following talks with Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia Demeke Mekonnen, Addis Ababa, July 27, 2022

Our positions on key regional and international issues have traditionally been identical or close because they rely on Russia and Ethiopia’s firm commitments to international law, primarily, the principles of the UN Charter, especially including respect for the sovereign equality of states. We see that the attempts by the United States and its allies to impose their views and development models on other nations and to promote their geopolitical zero-sum games run counter to these principles.


28.07.2022 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks following talks with Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia Demeke Mekonnen, Addis Ababa, July 27, 2022

Our positions on key regional and international issues have traditionally been identical or close because they rely on Russia and Ethiopia’s firm commitments to international law, primarily, the principles of the UN Charter, especially including respect for the sovereign equality of states. We see that the attempts by the United States and its allies to impose their views and development models on other nations and to promote their geopolitical zero-sum games run counter to these principles.


27.07.2022 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s statement and answers to media questions at a joint news conference with President of the Republic of Uganda Yoweri Kaguta Museveni following talks, Entebbe, July 26, 2022

The role of Africa in the new Concept for Russian Foreign Policy will be given much more prominence. This would have happened regardless of the developments in the West, which as you know, is “cancelling” itself on its own. Given our principled and long-term, as well as short-term interests, the importance of Africa will be increasing as a result of what the West is doing in respect of Russia. This will objectively force us to concentrate more on Africa in our work.


26.07.2022 - Foreign Minister’s Sergey Lavrov’s remarks and answers to media questions following his visit to the Republic of the Congo, Oyo, July 25, 2022

Our Western colleagues have become adept at distorting any news item when it can be used against Russia. Nothing surprises me anymore. Regarding the incident in Odessa, the obligations that Russia assumed under the agreements signed on July 22 in Istanbul say nothing about preventing us from continuing the special military operation, which can include destroying military infrastructure and other military targets. UN Secretariat representatives confirmed this interpretation of the documents yesterday.


25.07.2022 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks and answers to media questions during a joint news conference with Foreign Minister of the Arab Republic of Egypt Sameh Shoukry following talks, Cairo, July 24, 2022

Problems with the Ukrainian grain will be resolved through the coordination centre in Istanbul. It will be guaranteed that the Ukrainians clear their territorial waters from mines and allow the ships to sail from there. Throughout the itinerary on the high seas, Russia and Türkiye will ensure the ships’ safety with their naval forces. When the ships sail back to Ukrainian ports for new batches of food, they will be inspected to make sure no weapons are brought in. This document is publicly available. You can read it.


23.07.2022 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s statement regarding agreements on transporting Ukrainian grain from Black Sea ports and on promoting Russian exports of food and fertilisers, Moscow, July 22, 2022

Russia will honour its commitments in this regard. The fact that the United States and its allies are using food in the interests of their geopolitical adventures is unacceptable and inhumane.


22.07.2022 - Article by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Sergey Lavrov for the Egyptian newspaper Al-Ahram, the Congolese Dispatch de Brazzaville, the Ugandan New Vision, as well as the Ethiopian Ethiopia Herald, July 22, 2022

Moscow will continue to pursue a peace-loving foreign policy and play a balancing role in international affairs. We are in favor of broad interstate cooperation based on the provisions of the UN Charter, first of all the principle of the sovereign equality of states. We will continue to strengthen productive interaction with foreign partners who in their turn are willing to cooperate with us.



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