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Lavrov: China very close partner, it understands Russia’s legitimate interests

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PETROPAVLOVSK KAMCHATSKY, March 29. /ITAR-TASS/. China is a very close partner or Russia and contacts with it show that it understands Russia’s legitimate interests and that both countries have identical views on the causes of the current crisis in Ukraine, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told Sergei Brilev’s Vesti v Subbotu (News on Saturday) television programme on March 29.

“The Chinese are our very close partners. This is stated in our joint documents. We have relations of strategic and multifaceted cooperation. They are stated this way. All of China’s practical steps confirm its commitment to the principles the two countries have agreed to,” the minister said.

If the Americans had made attempts at the top level to put pressure on China to make it revise its economic agreements with Russia, “the degree of naivete or impertinence is simply goes over the top”, the minister said. “I would even say that it’s unforgiveable for professionals who prepare such negotiations not to understand the essence of the Chinese policy and character,” he said.

“The People’s Republic of China said from the very beginning that it was considering this situation in the entirety of historical and political factors. China strongly rejected attempts to solve this problem by non-political methods or to use sanctions for pressure. Our contacts with our Chinese partners show not only that they understand the legitimate interests of the Russian Federation in this situation but also that we have the identical understanding of the initial causes of the current deep crisis in Ukraine. That’s beyond doubt,” Lavrov said.

“There was a telephone conversation between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping. On March 24, on the sidelines of the Nuclear Security Summit in The Hague, I had a meeting with the Chinese president, and we also held talks with the foreign ministers of BRICS [Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa], the chairperson of which, a representative of South Africa, made a statement after our meeting,” the minister said.

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