MOSCOW, June 3. /TASS/. Western attempts to accuse Russia of creating the global food crisis are lies, as the situation started to worsen a few years ago, Deputy Chairman of Russia’s Security Council Dmitry Medvedev said in an interview to Qatar’s Al Jazeera television.
"In order to improve food security worldwide, to optimize the food situation, we need to renounce mutual sanctions, and prices will start to decline," Medvedev said.
Commenting on Western attempts to blame the crisis on Russia, the Russian official replied: "This is lies."
"The food situation on the planet started to worsen about five or seven years ago," he explained. "This was due to many reasons - macroeconomic miscalculations, bad harvests, draughts, climate changes, decisions made by some governments that sometimes were not quite right. This was when it all began."
Russia does not want its grain to be arrested
According to the deputy chairman of the Russian Security Council, Russia is ready to export grain, but it must be exempt from any sanctions.
"They [Western countries] want us to export wheat, for example, so that they could arrest it afterwards, or what?" Medvedev said, describing this scenario as "impossible."
In his words, the global food situation has worsened "as a result of sanctions imposed by the Western world."
"They tell us to ‘go ahead and export,’ but, at the same time, our <…> commercial ships are not being serviced, and attempts are being made to seize our property," the Russian official continued.
"The question is how we are going to transport it and whether it will be affected by sanctions. So, in this case, the ball is in their court now, in the West’s court," Medvedev said.
He also urged to lift "foolish sanctions regarding fertilizers."
"They impose sanctions first, and then get scared and lift them. Why? Because they realize that in this situation, nothing will grow," Medvedev said. "Those who make decisions about imposing restrictions should be guided by common sense, not rampant Russophobia, which became a common thing in the majority of [Western] countries: overseas, in the United States, and also in Europe, whose political leaders seem to be running in some sort of a competition for who is the biggest Russophobe."
He said he had discussed those matters with international partners, including with those who have friendly relations with Moscow.
"By the way, <…> in terms of proportions, numbers and population, friendly countries surpass those that are currently hostile to our state," the official said.