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Lavrov underscores importance of London’s rejection of provocative rhetoric

The selective nature of contacts, practice by the UK, is unacceptable in the normal diplomatic practice, the Foreign Ministry said in its statement

MOSCOW, June 17. /TASS/. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov emphasized the importance of rejection of ungrounded allegations against Russia by UK officials during his phone call with UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, Russian Foreign Ministry said Thursday.

According to the Ministry’s statement, the responsibility for the poor condition of relations between Russia and the UK lies entirely with London.

"During the conversation, [the Russian side] noted the unsatisfactory state of the bilateral relations, the responsibility for which lies entirely with London. Russia underscored the importance of rejection of ungrounded allegations, unproven by a single fact, and of provocative rhetoric in the international dialogue, as well as absence of alternatives to London’s return to the track of respectful and equal communication," the Ministry said in its statement.

"The selective nature of contacts, practice by the UK, which implies contacts only on issues that interest London, is unacceptable in the normal diplomatic practice," the Ministry said.

Remove the backlog

Lavrov also called on Raab to reciprocally "remove the backlog" in operation of Russian diplomatic missions in the UK.

"An emphasis was made on London’s unconstructive actions, which resulted in serious obstruction of operation of Russia diplomatic missions in the UK, which, naturally, caused reciprocal measures from Moscow. Sergey Lavrov urged to remove this backlog on a reciprocal basis," Russian Foreign Ministry said in its statement.

Besides, Lavrov urged Raab to engage in responsible cooperation, based on mutual consideration of interests, and concrete actions in order to form positive bilateral agenda.

"Sergey Lavrov called on the UK side to engage in responsible cooperation, based on mutual consideration of interests, and to take concrete actions in order to form positive agenda in Russian-British interaction. The sides agreed to solemnly celebrate the 80th anniversary of arrival of the fifth Arctic Convoy to the USSR," Russian Foreign Ministry said.

Pressing issues

According to the statement, the sides exchanged opinions on a number of international issues, with an emphasis on the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, the situation around Belarus and in Ukraine.

"During the discussion of the Belarusian topic, Sergey Lavrov pointed out the indisputability of rejection of external intervention in this country’s internal affairs, as well as of use of language of threats and sanctions in relations with Minsk," Russian Foreign Ministry said.

The sides also touched upon the alleged violations of the Convention on Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.

"In regards to the groundlessly promoted topic of Moscow’s alleged violations of the Chemical Weapons Convention, [the Russian side] spelled out the real situation around the actions of the West, who subdued the OPCW Technical Secretariat, undermining the universal principles of its operation, and blatantly violated the Convention," the Foreign Ministry said.

The sides also discussed the cooperation on combating the pandemic and the global climate change.

Previously, Lavrov and Raab talked by phone on May 6, 2020.

The conversation will continue

Dominic Raab disclosed that he and Lavrov discussed issues that cause serious disagreements between London and Moscow.

"We discussed a range of bilateral and international issues, including where we differ profoundly, as well as global challenges including international security, Covid-19, and climate change ahead of COP26 [the 26th UN Climate Change Conference - TASS]," Raab tweeted.

The UK Foreign Office disclosed that Raab and Lavrov "agreed to have a new conversation soon.".