MOSCOW, July 5. /TASS/. Russia cannot agree to give international affairs a back seat and has no right to shun its responsibility for the destiny of the world, Chairman of the Russian Historical Society, Director of the Foreign Intelligence Service Sergey Naryshkin said on Tuesday.
The Russian foreign intelligence chief made this statement at the international roundtable discussion called: "The Creator of New Russia," dedicated to the 350th birthday of Russian Emperor Peter the Great.
"In comprehending the scope of Peter the Great’s transformations today, I consider it right, first of all, to give credit to Peter himself - a courageous man and a forward-looking politician. Over a span of actually half a century until the ascent of Catherine the Great, our country fully moved along the pathway of Peter’s reforms and by inertia implemented all that he had devised in his time," Naryshkin recounted.
"Let me add that many principles laid down by Peter the Great are still relevant today as well. As before, our country has neither the right to turn its back on its responsibility for the destiny of the world, nor can it agree to a secondary role in international affairs, nor can it concede in vying for its national interests," the foreign intelligence chief stressed.
Peter the Great perceived Russia as a powerful and sovereign state equally belonging to the West and the East, Naryshkin pointed out.
"We should steadfastly remember these historical conclusions," the chairman of the Russian Historical Society emphasized.