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Duma speaker urges West not to toe U.S. anti-Russian line

September 09, 2014, 13:30 UTC+3
"It is high time for our partners to use their brains. Those in power in Washington are hardly capable of that but I believe our other partners should distance themselves from that aggressive policy"
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State Duma Speaker Sergei Naryshkin

State Duma Speaker Sergei Naryshkin

© ITAR-TASS/Vyacheslav Prokofyev

MOSCOW, September 9 ./ITAR-TASS/. The leader of Russia's lower house of parliament warned the West on Tuesday against taking the lead from Washington on events in Ukraine.

Speaking at a Russia-Japan forum eyeing points of contact, State Duma Speaker Sergei Naryshkin said Western countries and other Russian partners opting for sanctions had simply backed aggressive U.S. policy. Sanctions broke the hard-won pattern of global economic relations, he said.

“Imposed sanctions triggered violence [in Ukraine] instead of reducing it as the Kiev authorities took them as a reason for boosting their punitive operation in the southeast of the country, resulting in new destruction and numerous casualties,” Naryshkin said.

“Even now, when the negotiating process has been resumed and a ceasefire introduced, the situation remains extremely difficult,” he added, assessing, however, that common sense would prevail.

“It is high time for our partners to use their brains,” Naryshkin said. “Those in power in Washington are hardly capable of that but I believe our other partners should distance themselves from that aggressive policy and think at last that they are sovereign states.”

Parliamentarians were disappointed when Japan imposed sanctions against Russia, he said. “Any unbiased onlooker can clearly see that anti-Russian attacks are now co-ordinated in fact from one center, and this center is separated from Russia and Japan by the ocean.”

Russia and Japan knew well how difficult it was to build an atmosphere of trust and how painful a lull in co-operation could be, the speaker said, noting that sanctions are an instrument of open and political blackmail unsupported by judicial or United Nations decisions.

“Sanctions, of course, largely violate and sometimes simply break the pattern of international economic relations that need decades to be shaped,” Naryshkin said. “Negative effects of sanctions hit directly those who were compelled to impose them,” he said.

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