YEREVAN, May 6. /TASS/. Brussels’ statements about the illegitimacy of Russia’s steps in response to the EU’s unilateral sanctions indicate that Europeans believe that anything is permissible for them, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told reporters on Thursday at a news conference in Yerevan.
"With regard to the latest developments, we stated clearly that we had declared those people in EU agencies and a number of EU member-states personae non gratae due to the fact that they took a decisive part in another round of sanctions against our officials, including parliamentarians," he said. "The fact that the European Union declared that our actions were illegitimate and lacked international legal justification means just one thing - that the European Union believes that anything is permissible for it."
Lavrov also noted that the EU’s threats to slap more sanctions on Russia showed that it was confident that its actions would go unpunished. "When the European Union begins to threaten us with new sanctions, I just start to think that, beyond this sense of ‘anything goes’ and infallibility, the European Union is starting to get obsessed with another mania, and what I mean here is its complete impunity. I believe that going down this road will lead to a dead-end," he said.
According to Russia’s top diplomat, a number of EU members share that stance, but "the aggressive Russophobic lobby in the European Union is doing its job," and so far those who disagree with them cannot oppose that. "This is sad, but this is not our choice. Let me stress once again that, if you just look at the statistics of what happened after March 2014, you will instantly see who started that flurry of sanctions and what is the reason why we cannot but respond to that animosity," Lavrov concluded.