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30 June 2022, 14:04

Russia, Belarus to insist on respect for their legitimate security interests

Sergey Lavrov and Aleksandr Lukashenko
Sergey Lavrov and Aleksandr Lukashenko

MINSK, 30 June (BelTA) – Russia and Belarus will firmly insist on respect for their legitimate security interests in an age when NATO continues acting rather aggressively. Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov made the statement after meeting with Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko, BelTA has learned.

Sergey Lavrov stressed: “Russia and Belarus will firmly insist on getting their legitimate security interests respected in an age when NATO continues acting rather aggressively. We are always in favor of a dialogue. We are always in favor of decisions that ensure equality and balance of interests.”

Yet everyone knows how NATO treats such arrangements. Resolutions saying that all the OSCE member states shall respect the principle of indivisibility of security and that no one shall reinforce its own security at the expense of security of others have been passed over there many times. “Since the moment such commitments were undertaken at the top level, we have been insisting that these commitments should be implemented into real deeds. Instead NATO expanded five times while claiming the alliance is a defensive one,” Sergey Lavrov said. “When the Warsaw Pact was in effect, it was clear that there is NATO and there is the Warsaw Pact. The Berlin wall, an imaginary wall between the two military political blocs. The Warsaw Pact is no more. But NATO continued expanding to the east, thus marking a new line of defense if we are to believe their statements. It is understandable that such statements, such logic are totally absurd.”

After a regular NATO summit in Madrid representatives of the USA stated that the alliance had been, was, and would be defensive. “I've already mentioned how defensive it was. Suffice to recall how ‘defensive' it was in Iraq and destroyed the country. How ‘defensive' it was in Libya with the same result. How Yugoslavia was destroyed in 1999 when for the first time NATO countries, which are also OSCE member states, bombed another OSCE member state. No security interests of the NATO member states were affected in all these cases but they believed they had the right to ‘defend' themselves like that. What did they do during all these years when we tried to convince the alliance to honor commitments not to enhance its own security at the expense of security of others, not to expand to the east? They were pumping Ukraine full of weapons. They condoned neo-Nazi manifestations, neo-Nazi theory and practice by all means. They backed a coup and a policy designed to completely sabotage the Minsk agreements,” Sergey Lavrov reminded.

In his words, it is now clear that nobody was going to honor the Minsk agreements, that it was maneuvering designed to buy time in order to refit the army and prepare revenge. The first former president of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko has mentioned it recently in public.

Sergey Lavrov went on saying: “It was no surprise for the West that we decided to firmly defend our interests when all proposals on negotiations based on an equal footing, based on search for a balance of interests instead of pushing for one's own interests to the detriment of interests of Russia and Belarus, when all these opportunities were exhausted. Now judging from the hysterical reaction, we see how deeply this problem was rooted and how much hope the West had for Ukraine becoming a permanent irritant, a tool to deter Russia, how much hope the West had for promotion of Russophobia, destruction and cancelling of all things Russian. We see how emotionally the West responds because these plans will fail. We will not allow the plans to come true. The plans directly contradict international law and all the values as the West is fond of saying, including protection of rights of national minorities, which have been repeatedly and blatantly trampled in Ukraine with direct connivance of our Western colleagues.”

Belarus and Russia maintain the same stance on these matters, Sergey Lavrov said. “We categorically disagree with the policy pursued by the West – diktat, ultimatums, enforcement of their own requirements, use of illegal sanctions that violate the UN Charter, and many other actions, which Western colleagues led by the USA (more likely, subjugated by the USA, Europeans obey without question) are trying to replace universal international law with,” the official said.

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