During a press conference in South Africa, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov expressed Moscow’s willingness to engage in diplomacy but noted that they have no patience for threats. Lavrov was asked about what needs to happen for Western countries to change their policy and move away from confrontation. In response, Lavrov stated that when talking to Western diplomats, he sees no glimmers of common sense, as their approach amounts to demanding action rather than engaging in meaningful discussions.
He emphasized that while Russia is always open to discussions, they will not respond to boorish ultimatums, extortion, or threats. Lavrov argued that the West has abandoned meaningful negotiations in favor of a belligerent attitude. He even claimed that Westerners themselves have expressed the desire to “defeat” Russia and inflict a strategic defeat on them, which further illustrates the lack of common sense.
Lavrov accused Western countries, including many in the EU, of behaving as obedient agents of Washington on the world stage, to the detriment of their own citizens and economies. He argued that they prioritize the interests of the United States over their own national interests.
When asked about French President Emmanuel Macron’s desire to attend the BRICS summit while arming Ukraine and offering himself as a mediator in the conflict, Lavrov dismissed it as empty posturing. He believed that if someone genuinely wanted to contribute to a settlement, it should be done through appropriate channels rather than through a microphone. Lavrov also pointed out France’s previous role as a mediator in Ukraine, referring to the 2014-15 Minsk peace accords, which were endorsed by the UN Security Council. He highlighted former French President Francois Hollande’s admission that the process was merely a way to buy time to arm Ukraine against Russia.
Earlier in the week, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova commented on peace initiatives by several BRICS members, stating that Russia has always been open to a diplomatic solution to the crisis and is ready to respond to serious proposals. However, Ukraine has insisted solely on its own peace formula, which Russia has rejected as delusional.
Throughout the conflict between Ukraine and Russia, many Western countries have openly sided with Ukraine, imposing sanctions on Russia and supplying Ukraine with heavy weapons. This support has heightened tensions between Russia and the West.
In conclusion, Lavrov’s remarks highlight the frustration felt by Russia regarding Western countries’ lack of common sense in their diplomatic approach. Russia remains open to discussions but is unwilling to engage in negotiations that involve ultimatums, extortion, or threats. The accusation that Western countries act as obedient agents of the United States further reflects the strained relationship between Russia and the West. Despite efforts by BRICS members to propose peace initiatives, Russia and Ukraine remain at odds, with Russia rejecting Ukraine’s peace formula as delusional. The conflict has caused divisions between Russia and the West, with Western countries siding with Ukraine and imposing sanctions on Russia.