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Russia withstands West’s sanctions pressure — Lavrov

Anti-Russian line cannot be justified by anything and also has no prospects, Foreign Minister said

MOSCOW, April 30. /TASS/. Russia has overcome the sanction pressure of Western states and the situation has already been stabilizing, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in the interview with the Xinhua news agency.

"The special operation for protection of Donbass has become the cause for the collective West to introduce large-scale restrictive measures against Russia, its legal entities and individuals. The US, the UK, Canada, countries of the European Union do not hide the goal of "strangling" our economy, undermining its competitiveness and blocking further progressive development of the country," Lavrov said. "It is obvious such anti-Russian line cannot be justified by anything and also has no prospects. As President [of Russia Vladimir] Putin noted, Russia withstood this unprecedented pressure. The situation is stabilizing now, although, certainly, by no means all risks have already gone. In any case, it will not work out to weaken us," the Minister said.

Russia "will readjust the economy and safeguard itself against possible illegitimate unfriendly actions of opponents in future," Lavrov noted. "We will continue responding in a balanced and appropriate way to introduced restrictions, following tasks of supporting stability of the Russian economy, its financial system, and interests of domestic business and the entire population," he added.

"We will proceed with the adaptation to external challenges and intensify development programs for promising and competitive sectors," the Minister added.

About 16,000 nationals of third countries, including the staff of UN and OSCE missions, asked Russia for help in evacuation from the start of the special military operation in Ukraine, Lavrov said.

"During the special military operation, the hotline of the interdepartmental coordination center of the Russian Federation for humanitarian response received requests for assistance in evacuation to Russia from 2.8 mln people, of which 16,000 - foreign nationals and employees of UN and OSCE international missions. 1.02 mln people were evacuated in total from Ukraine, from the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, with more than 120,000 third country citizens among them, including more than 300 Chinese nationals," the Russian top diplomat said.

The Russian military in Ukraine are doing everything depending on them to avoid casualties among civilians, Lavrov said.

"The special military operation is on track. Russian servicemen are doing everything depending on them to avoid losses among noncombatants within its framework. Strikes are made by high-precision weapons, in the first instance against military infrastructural facilities and materiel concentration areas. Unlike the Ukrainian army and nationalistic armed units using the population as the human shield, the Russian army provides all the possible help and support to local population," Lavrov stressed.

NATO countries are doing everything to prevent completion of the Russian special operation in Ukraine by political agreements, Lavrov said.

"We witness the manifestation of classic double standards and hypocrisy of the Western establishment at present. Publicly expressing support to the Kiev regime, NATO countries are doing everything to prevent completion of the operation by way of reaching political agreements," the Russian Minister said.