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Russia does not seek to spite US by boosting relations with Venezuela — Lavrov

The Russian foreign minister recalled that Moscow had begun to develop cooperation with Caracas 20 years ago

VLADIVOSTOK, July 8. /TASS/. Moscow does not seek to spite Washington by boosting relations with Caracas, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at Far Eastern Federal University on Thursday.

"There is nothing anti-American about our relations with Venezuela. We firmly support Venezuela in the face of the United States’ illegal actions but it doesn’t mean that we maintain friendly ties only to spite the US," Lavrov pointed out. "We have repeatedly emphasized that when any country in Asia, Latin America, Africa and Europe offers mutually beneficial projects to us, we never refuse to discuss such offers," he stressed.

Moscow began to boost relations with Caracas 20 years ago, when Hugo Chavez ruled Venezuela, Lavrov noted. Back then, Russia and Venezuela launched joint oil and gas projects. Cooperation continues to this day but the parties have to take Washington’s sanctions on Venezuela into account, the Russian top diplomat added.

"And, as with Syria, Cuba, and Nicaragua, by boosting relations with these countries we not only seek to implement mutually beneficial projects but also protect justice and the United Nations Charter on the international stage," Lavrov concluded.