BRUSSELS, May 3. /TASS/. Russia’s permanent representative to the European Union, Vladimir Chizhov, has provided explanations to the European Commission and the European External Action Service regarding Moscow’s measures taken in retaliation against Brussels’ unilateral actions and stressed the importance of improving bilateral relations, as follows from a statement released by Russia’s permanent mission at the EU on Monday.
"On May 3, there was a meeting between Russia’s permanent representative to the EU, Vladimir Chizhov, on the one hand, and Secretary-General of the European External Action Service Stefano Sannino and European Commission’s Secretary-General Ylva Johansson, on the other hand," the statement runs.
"Ambassador Vladimir Chizhov provided additional explanations regarding the measures Russia introduced on April 30, 2021 in retaliation against the European Union’s unilateral decisions. The importance was stressed of diplomatic actions to straighten out the current unhealthy situation in the dialogue between Moscow and Brussels. The Russian side reaffirmed its readiness for this work," the diplomatic mission said.
The Russian mission said that the current condition of Russia-EU relations was discussed and its participants "expressed regret over the trend towards their worsening that grew stronger lately."
Earlier, the EU’s External Action Service issued a statement expressing condemnation and rejection of Russia’s actions. Brussels argued that Russia’s counter-sanctions against the EU were "entirely groundless" and the cumulative effect of these sanctions, alongside the expulsion of Czech diplomats and measures that Russia had taken against unfriendly states would cause further complications in the EU’s relations with Russia.
Earlier, EEAS spokesman Peter Stano said that the EU foreign minsters would discuss relations with Russia in Brussels on May 10. Also, this issue will be on the agenda of the G7 foreign minsters’ meeting in London on May 3-5.
On April 30, the Russian Foreign Ministry issued a statement containing a list of citizens of EU member-states prohibited from entering Russia. Among the eight officials on this list are the European Parliament’s President David Sassoli, the EU Commissioner for Values and Transparency Vera Jourova, Berlin’s Chief State Prosecutor Jorg Raupach, and head of the laboratory of chemical, biological, radiation and nuclear safety at the Research Institute for Total Defense of Sweden Osa Scott.
Moscow’s decision was in retaliation for the EU’s restrictions the EU Council imposed on six Russian citizens on March 2 and 22.