14:10 / 03.03.2023

Lavrov comments on Blinken’s visit to Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan

Earlier, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov also answered a question about the visit of the US Secretary of State to the countries of Central Asia.

Photo: Alexander Shcherbak / TASS

On March 2, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov answered media questions following a meeting of the G20 Council of Foreign Ministers.

The Russian Foreign Minister was asked how he assesses the US Secretary of State’s visit to Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan.

Sergey Lavrov stressed that “we have never opposed any country developing external relations with other states”.

“We have always emphasized that it is not in our principles to “be friends against someone”. Now we have observed increased activity not only of Americans, but also of Europeans (British, of course) in the developing world and especially in the CIS. This is just their “line”. They do not hide the fact that they are working there against these countries maintaining a good relationship with the Russian Federation. We know what arguments are used. There are actually few of them. If you try to define the quintessence – “take the side of the winner”, “Russia will collapse”, “decide in advance”. I do not exaggerate in relation to our neighbors,” the head of the Russian FM said.

Lavrov recalled that the Norwegian FM recently stated that “they must work with Africa to resist Russia”.

“A good definition of the place of the African continent in the politics of the state is Norway. I repeat: we are always for each country to determine its own priorities. We proceed not just from understanding, but we know that our neighbors, partners, allies in the CSTO, the EAEU, the CIS in all their contacts confirm their commitment to the obligations concluded within the framework of these integration structures,” he concluded.

Earlier, on February 28, Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov did not comment on US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s visit to Central Asian countries.

“I would not like to comment on the visits of the US Secretary of State. After all, I am the president’s press secretary. This is the prerogative of my colleagues in the Foreign Ministry.

In general, we have our own bilateral relations with the Central Asian countries, we have our own formats of interaction, with a number of them we are united by the integration processes of the EAEC, which is what we focus on, what we are interested in and what we consider to be our main foreign policy priority,” the press secretary of the President of the Russian Federation Dmitry Peskov said to journalists in response to a request to comment on Blinken’s trip to Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan.