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Lavrov says attempts to use sanctions to punish Russia and China are unwise

Russian Foreign Minister noted that sanctions are especially painful for developing and poor countries

MOSCOW, March 22. /TASS/. It is unwise to use sanctions in a bid to punish Russia and China, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in an interview with the Chinese mass media.

"You hear European businesses voicing resentment that it is suffering losses whereas their niche on the Russian market is being taken by other countries, which are guided by their national interests, by the interests of the development of their economies and business support rather than by the logic of punishing anyone for anything. It is wrong to punish anyone on the present-day international arena and it is simply unwise to try to use this logic in respect of Russia and China," he said.

The minister noted that sanctions are especially painful for developing and poor countries amid the pandemic, which has restricted the countries’ possibilities to ensure normal life for their citizens. "No wonder that United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet later on came out with an initiative to freeze sanctions and make reservations from them for goods essential for the population amid the coronavirus infection," he stressed.

According to Lavrov, Western nations have totally ignored this initiative, as they ignored Russian President Vladimir Putin’s initiative to establish green corridors free from sanctions and other artificial barriers. "Together with China and a great number of other like-minded partners, we raise this matter in international formats, including the United Nations. It has passed a lot of resolutions condemning as illegitimate unilateral economic and other sanctions imposed in bypassing of the United Nations Security Council, especially extra-territorial measures," he stressed.