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Lavrov: There will be no military interference to Ukraine

September 01, 2014, 10:19 UTC+3 1/9
According to Russia’s foreign minister, Washington and Brussels should demand that Kiev quit using arms against civilians
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© EPA/SERGEI ILNITSKY

MOSCOW, September 1. /ITAR-TASS/. There will be no military interference to Ukraine, and Russia is for peaceful settlement. Sergei Lavrov, Russia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, has made this statement on Monday at an annual meeting with students and teachers of Moscow State University of Foreign Affairs.

“There will be no military interference. We are committed exclusively to the peaceful settlement of this deep crisis, this tragedy,” Lavrov stated.

He noted that the demand to the militia to lay down arms was unrealistic.

The minister said that Washington and Brussels should demand that Kiev quit using heavy weaponry against civilians.

“The most important is that Washington and Brussels demand from Kiev the same that they demand in all other conflicts: to stop using heavy weaponry and aviation against civil facilities and civilians,” the minister stressed.

Demand to militiamen to lay down arms 'unrealistic'

The demand to the militia to lay down arms is unrealistic, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said.

“Let’s sit for talks, but not threaten with sanctions against Russia and insist on quite unrealistic demands for the militia to lay down their arms and allow to kill them,” the minister said.

"Unfortunately, our western partners are blinded with the situation and give their support to any statements and actions of the current Ukrainian authorities," Lavrov said adding that this position was biased and non-critical.

Moscow hopes that Contact Group at session in Minsk will discuss cessation of fire, Lavrov added.

"I expect that the talks started earlier in the day will be dedicated to a task of fixing, immediately and without preconditions, terms for a ceasefire," the minister said.

The foreign minister noted that it was possible and necessary to return to pragmatic cooperation in relations of Russia with the United States and the EU.

“We believe that in relations with the European Union and the United States it is possible and necessary to return to pragmatic cooperation based on equality of rights and mutual respect. But for this, it is necessary to give up the absolutely hopeless policy of ultimatums, threats and sanctions,” the minister said.

I believe the Ukraine crisis should show everyone the absolute harmfulness of a stance, which puts particular countries, especially those close to us, like Ukraine, before a choice: ‘either you go to us or you go to Russia and then we’ll build new dividing lines and walls between us,” Lavrov said.

This choice of either with us or against us, which Brussels sometimes demands from Ukraine and other countries of the post-Soviet space, “is prevocational,” the Russian foreign minister said. “I would say this is worse than a crime, this is a big mistake,” Lavrov said.

The Russian foreign minister said that “you can’t make a stake on a military force, especially in the 21st century.” “I hope that we’ll move away from a dangerous line as far as the Ukraine crisis is concerned,” Lavrov said.

Customs Union and Ukrainian crisis

There is no disagreement between the Customs Union countries (Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan) due to the Ukrainian crisis, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said.

This topic has been recently discussed by the Customs Union leaders in Minsk, Lavrov said, adding “It [the meeting] was devoted to searching for ways to settle the Ukrainian crisis in all its aspects - from ceasefire to economic harmony.”

“Decisions would be indispensable to prevent Ukraine, which signed the association deal with the EU, from violating its obligations under the CIS free trade zone agreement,” Lavrov said.

The Customs Union countries “have a common approach. The Customs Union is a unification of sovereign states that seek to unite the economic, trade and investment potential”, he said.

Reaction to sanctions

Russia "will not slam the door" in view of new sanctions, Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov stated on Monday when addressing the students and faculty members of the MGIMO University for International Relations.

"As for our reply measures in the event of a new wave of anti-Russia sanctions, l shall not even discourse on the subjects or indulge in fantasy thinking because everything must be specifically calculated," he said. "When we understand what European and American partners will consider worthy of resorting to this time, we shall decide how to respond to that".

"That will not be connected with door-slamming or some falsely understood grievances," the Minister emphasized. "We shall proceed, first of all, from our interests to protect our economy, the social welfare sector, our citizens, and our business, and we shall draw conclusions from partners' actions from the viewpoint of their adequacy, ability to reach agreement and reliability."

Infographics Economical sanctions against Russia Economical sanctions against Russia
The USA, EU, Canada and Australia have introduced sanctions against Russia over its involvement in the Ukrainian crisis. Infographics by ITAR-TASS
"On the strength of steps being taken in the field of sanctions, it is possible to judge very well what partners press for," Russia's Foreign Minister went on to say. "If they say in full voice that 'they (sanctions) will also be painful to us but we have to resort to them so as to punish Russia', that probably is not very adequate".

"As far as the WTO is concerned (namely, Russia's withdrawal in reply to possible new sanctions), we shall not withdraw. On the contrary, we want more actively to master the WTO instruments, including those concerning trade disputes," Lavrov said. "We have already used those instruments in order to overcome, what we believe, the EU's discriminatory policy with regard to anti-dumping procedures".

The Minister said Russia is accused of dumping and at the same time anti-dumping measures are aimed against sectors of the Russian economy.

We are also prepared to use WTO mechanisms also for upholding our stand on the inadmissibility of the norms of the third energy package of the EU retrospectively," Lavrov said.

Boeing crash investigation

 Investigators must be returned to the Boeing crash site in Ukraine, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said.

“No facts are given to us. They persuade us to believe their words,” he said.

“The European Council wrote in a document that it demanded immediate access to the site of the Malaysian Boeing crash. Where have they been until now. There was no threat from the militia,” Lavrov said.

“There was a demand of the UN Security Council to ensure ceasefire in the area of the crash. But Kiev stated the same day that they would stop firing after taking control of the area,” the minister said.

Visa regime

 Prospects for abrogation of visa formalities between Russia and the European Union countries are not very reassuring, Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergei Lavrov stated.

"The prospects are not very reassuring, frankly speaking," the Minister pointed out. "A not very numerous but pushy group formed in the European Union. That group came out against abrogating visas. They made no bones of speaking about that".

 

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