LONDON, March 26 /TASS/. The Russian embassy in London has described the recent remarks by British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond on Russia’s count as "unacceptable and undiplomatic".
"It seems that standing tall means for Britain having a tall enemy, which Russia fits perfectly at all times, but also attachment to the prejudices of the imperial past, including the idea of containment of Russia. Ukraine is being turned into another Eastern Question as a pretext for this policy," the embassy said in its press release which was circulated on Thursday in response to Hammond’s speech made on March 25.
"One cannot help explaining this rhetoric other than by the prospect of an absolutely unpredictable elections in May. But why blame Russia for that and not talk about the real issues?" the press release said.
"The British electorate’s concerns, quite obviously, lie somewhere else. And as to Ukraine, yes, people do fight for their language rights and beliefs, like the English did in the great northern rebellion under Henry VIII. Is it that suppressing people is still a matter of course in the XXI century?," the Russian embassy said.
"It’s worth noting that the British Government declared their affection for international law and rules-based international system only after the West’s scheming, supposed to be accomplished on the cheap, had gone terribly wrong with a coup d’etat and resulting violence. What about the illegal War in Iraq and intervention in Libya and their disastrous consequences for the region and Britain’s own security? the press release said.
In his speech on March 25, Mr. Hammond clearly identified the "three major foreign policy challenges" facing Britain with Russia topping the list.
"Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea and its aggression in eastern Ukraine are both attacks on the international rules-based system. In the place of partnership, Russia has chosen the role of strategic competitor, at the very time when the diffusion of power more widely around the world makes the international rules-based system all the more important as the principal means to keep the peace between nations. So we must be steadfast in the defense of where nations threaten to undermine it, as we have been, and will remain, in response to Russia’s actions," Mr. Philip Hammond said while addressing the diplomatic corps at Lord Mayor’s reception.
"We will maintain our efforts to ensure the European Union remains resolute, robust, united and aligned with the United States in the face of this challenge. Because this isn’t just about Ukraine: it is about Russia and its future intentions; about its apparent aspiration to exercise control over the former Soviet republics which were liberated by the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1989 - an event we celebrate, but which President Putin describes as "the greatest geo-political catastrophe of the 20th Century". It is about standing firm and standing united now, to prevent renewed tests of our resolve in the future," Mr. Hammond said.
The two other challenges, according to Hammond, include the ISIS extremist group as well as the need to reform the EU and find the right balance between the interests of the bloc and its separate members.