Lavrov stressed that the increase in Russian missile strikes is aimed at “destroying power plants,” infrastructures that “allow them to continue to send deadly weapons to Ukraine to destroy the Russians.”
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov this Thursday accused the West, especially the United States and NATO, of being directly involved in conflict in Ukraine by providing weapons and training Ukrainian soldiers.
Lavrov stressed that Russia’s attacks on Ukrainian power plants and other key infrastructure, which left millions of people without electricity, heat and water, were aimed at “weakening the military potential” of Ukraine and “making it impossible to send Western weapons.”
“It cannot be said that the US and NATO [Organização do Tratado do Atlântico Norte] do not participate in this war. They are directly involved in this,” Lavrov told reporters at a video press conference.
“And they not only supply weapons, but also train soldiers. They do it in the UK, Germany, Italy and other countries,” he added.
“The infrastructure targeted by the attacks is used to ensure the combat potential of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and nationalist battalions,” Lavrov said.
Ukraine and the West have accused Moscow of attacking vital civilian infrastructure in order to “humiliate morale and force Ukraine to negotiate peace on Russia’s terms.”
Lavrov insisted that Moscow remain open to negotiations to end the conflict.
“We have never asked for negotiations, but we have always said that we are ready to listen to those who are interested in concluding an agreement,” Lavrov said.
The Kremlin has called on Ukraine to recognize Crimea, annexed by Moscow in 2014, as part of Russia, as well as other gains made since the entry of troops into eastern Ukraine on February 24 this year to combat the “militarization” and “Nazization” of the region.
When asked about the possibility of a meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and the United States Joe Biden, the head of Russian diplomacy replied that Moscow “has always been available” for such a meeting, adding, however, that “no serious thought has yet been voiced.
Lavrov said that US counterpart Anthony Blinken raised the issue of US citizens trapped in Russia in a telephone conversation, but noted that Putin and Biden agreed to set up a separate communication channel to discuss the issue during their meeting in Geneva. in June 2021.
“It works, and I hope that some results will be achieved,” he said.
For months, the Biden administration tried to negotiate the release of North American basketball star Britney Greener and Paul Whelan, a corporate security chief from Michigan, for which it proposed a prisoner exchange format with Moscow.
Commenting on Russia’s decision to postpone a round of talks with the United States on nuclear arms control, scheduled for this week, Lavrov said that “it is impossible to discuss strategic stability today if everything that happens in Ukraine is ignored.”
“The goal has been declared and it is to defeat Russia on the battlefield or even destroy Russia. How can the goal of defeating Russia be irrelevant to strategic stability if they want to destroy a key actor of strategic stability?” Lavrov replied.
During a press video conference that lasted about two and a half hours, Lavrov also criticized the United States and its NATO allies, accusing them of “trampling international law by trying to isolate and destroy Russia.”
Lavrov concluded by also accusing Washington of encouraging other countries, including India, to cut off relations with Russia.
“These attempts failed,” he concluded.
Russia’s military offensive in Ukraine has already caused the flight of more than 13 million people – more than six million internally displaced people and more than 7.8 million to European countries – according to the latest figures from the UN, which classifies the refugee crisis as the worst in Europe since World War II ( 1939-1945).
The Russian invasion, justified by President Vladimir Putin as the need to “denazify” and “demilitarize” Ukraine for Russia’s security, was condemned by the international community at large, which responded by sending weapons to Kyiv and imposing sanctions. Moscow authorities.
Until Wednesday, the UN had presented 6,655 civilian deaths and 10,368 injured civilians as confirmed since the start of the war, emphasizing that these numbers are much lower than the real ones.