Lavrov: Moscow Wants Security Guarantees That Will Be Common for Russia, Ukraine, All of Europe
09:09 GMT 18.03.2022 (Updated: 11:23 GMT 18.03.2022)
© Sputnik / Evgeniy Biyatov/
In December, Moscow rolled out its security proposals to NATO and the United States, seeking legal security guarantees from the West, demanding NATO's non-expansion eastward.
Russia is seeking security guarantees that will be common for Moscow, Kiev, and all of Europe, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told RT in an interview on Friday as he elaborated on the goals of the military operation in Ukraine.
"The goal is to demilitarise Ukraine so that such a threat does not come from Ukrainian territory, as well as to obtain security guarantees that will be based on the principle of indivisible common security for Ukraine, for Russia, for all European countries, we have been proposing this for many years", the top Russian diplomat said.
The principle of indivisible security has been addressed by Russia since December 2021, when Moscow rolled out its security proposals to the West. Moscow demanded the alliance not expand eastward to include Ukraine and Georgia, to which Washington replied by insisting it will not allow anyone to slam the alliance's open-door policy shut. Responding to this, Russia pointed at the principle of indivisible security, which states that the security of any state cannot undermine the security of another.
In January, the Russian Foreign Ministry sent letters to each EU country, urging to focus on the principle and work out any "differences in the understanding of the principle of equal and indivisible security". However, a response was received only from the bloc, with EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell saying that Brussels would act as one on all issues of key common interest, including coordinated replies to letters. Moscow said it could not accept a "collective" response when it sought feedback from each addressee.
'Global Village Under American Sheriff'
Lavrov expressed hope that the current "abnormal" situation between Russia and Ukraine will be resolved, but warned that the West is going to prevent this from happening.
"I am sure that the historical closeness of the two fraternal peoples will prevail", Lavrov stressed.
Elaborating on the influence that Western countries have on Ukraine, Lavrov pointed at the biological weapons' components purportedly being created in the Eastern European country under US supervision.
"Ukraine is perhaps the largest project, from the point of view of the Pentagon, which manages the activities of these laboratories", the Russian foreign minister said, speaking about the biological laboratories in Ukraine, which, according to findings by the Russian Defence Ministry, were funded by Washington to work on various infections, viruses, and potentially bioweapons.
Lavrov estimated that the United States is seeking a unipolar world where every country will obey the strongest one. Such a view envisages no global village, the Russian foreign minister outlined; it would rather be "an American village".
He said that Washington has managed to "mobilise" the world based on American interests - something that, Lavrov believes, points to the actual scale of "independence" of the European Union and NATO members.
However, not everyone is ready to agree with that, according to Lavrov.
"There are players who would never accept the global village under an American sheriff", he said. "China, India, Brazil, Argentina, Mexico - I am sure that these countries do not want to just be in a position when Uncle Sam orders them [to do] something and they say 'yes sir'".
Russia, he said, is also "not in the category of countries who would be ready to do so".
Information War & Sanctions
According to Lavrov, the West continues to wage an "information war" against Russia, trying to present one side of the story behind the Ukrainian conflict.
He also pointed at how Washington tries to use TikTok to "brainwash" children - something that Lavrov said is "not fair".
The West's intention is to marginalise Russia, the top diplomat said, using its unprecedented pressure to curb Russia's development. Yet, even in the face of the massive waves of sanctions, Russia will work out the measures to respond and keep improving the country.
"I must say that sanctions have always only strengthened us", Lavrov noted.
The Russian foreign minister said that the country has so far faced over 5,000 individual sanctions - a record that eclipses the restrictions imposed against Iran and North Korea.
What is happening now, Lavrov said, cannot be compared to the amount of sanctions introduced against Moscow after the events of 2014, when Crimea was reunified with Russia, but the experience of that time allowed the country to learn a lesson that helped it prepare for the current situation.
"Now the illusion that we can count on Western partners has been shattered. Now we can only rely on ourselves and those allies who will stay with us", Lavrov said.
His interview comes amid the ongoing Russian military operation in Ukraine, launched on 24 February. The Kremlin said the goal was to "demilitarise and de-Nazify" its neighbour and protect the people from the Donetsk and Lugansk People's Republics suffering at the hands of the Ukrainian military. The military operation has received strong condemnation from the Wests, with nations imposing harsh sanctions targeting Russian businesses, culture, financial sector, media outlets, and many other areas.