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Lavrov: Russia wonders at EU silence about law breaches in Ukraine

February 01, 2014, 15:40 UTC+3 MUNICH
The foreign minister’s key question was “how are related the incitements to street protests, which are growing in violence, and the promotion of democratic principles”
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MUNICH, February 01, 15:32 /ITAR-TASS/. The situation in Ukraine is among most discussed ones at the Munich Security Conference. Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov paid special attention to the events in Kiev.

The foreign minister’s key question was “how are related the incitements to street protests, which are growing in violence, and the promotion of democratic principles.”

The minister asked: “Why do not we hear calls for those who seize and keep until now the administrative buildings, who attacks the police, who cries out racist, anti-Semitism and Nazi slogans: We would prominent European politicians actually support the actions of the kind, though while at home they would immediately and toughly stop similar breaches of the legislation?”

Head of the Russian diplomacy said the actions of authorities in situations similar to that in Kiev are explained in international agreements as those requiring use of the force in cases, where protesters violate the law.

“Among the common grounds Russia and the European Union are sharing is the international pact on political and civil rights. This is a sort of a canon in the human rights sphere, which offers clear explanations of the norms the government should follow in various situations, including in a situation similar to one continuing in Ukraine nowadays. It reads clearly that any protests in the context of expressing free views cannot violate the law, and the disorders, acts of force may be sufficient reasons to limit those freedoms. Let us remember this,” he said stressing “in order to remain democratic, a state should be strong.”

Lavrov criticised his counterparts who had been confident in Ukraine’s “European choice.”

“Right now we have heard the European Union’s head Mister Van Rompuy. He said Ukraine’s people should make their choice, though adding he was sure Ukraine’s future was in the European Union. Here, we have also heard my friend, NATO’s Secretary General Anders Fog Rasmussen who also said Ukraine should have a freedom of choice. But we all can remember how back in 2007 during the NATO summit this choice was pre-made for Ukraine, but later on still common sense prevailed. I would also like to mention what a representative of the US Department of State said - the US hoped Ukraine would form a government, which will be for political unanimity and economic booming, supported by IMF and meeting the aspirations of the Ukrainian people for the European future,” the foreign minister said.

“If this is a confirmation of a freedom for choice, then the translation of this freedom for the Ukrainian people is rather weird,” Lavrov said. “It is an imposition of choice, which we, Russia, do not want and will not be doing.

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