“We are seriously concerned about NATO’s activities in the immediate vicinity of our borders, especially in the Baltic States and Poland,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said.
Lavrov visited the Belarusian capital Minsk on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the Russian Federation and Belarus.
Speaking at a joint press conference after his meeting with Belarusian Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei, Lavrov said: “We are seriously concerned about NATO’s activities in the immediate vicinity of our borders, especially in the Baltic States and Poland. Our common conviction is that such actions have a clearly confrontational character and will lead to further escalation of tensions and fragmentation of the European security space.”
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“By its actions, the West has buried the principle of ‘no state should strengthen its security at the cost of endangering others’,” Lavrov said, adding that the Organization for Security Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) had destroyed the “principle of indivisibility of security” proclaimed in the late 1990s and in 2010.
– “American activities in the former Soviet republics are very, very dangerous”
During his meeting with his counterpart, Lavrov said that they attach special importance to biological security, adding that the activities of the Americans in the former Soviet republics are “very, very dangerous”. “We do not see any desire from the Americans to ensure transparency of their military biological activities. We see this as a threat to the national security of our countries.”
Lavrov recalled that the Russian Federation has a cooperation agreement on this issue with Belarus and the former Soviet republics within the framework of the Collective Security Organization Treaty (CSTO) as a measure against covert initiatives.
The ministers were asked whether there would be an “Iron Curtain” between Russia and Belarus and Western countries that envision ideological confrontation.
Belarusian Foreign Minister Makei said that the outlines of the “Iron Curtain” are already on the horizon and its foundation has been laid.
“Political contacts have been zeroed out. In the economy, sanctions are being imposed on us, trade and economic relations built up over the years are being shattered. Restrictions have been imposed on our citizens. Airspace is closed to Belarusian and Russian companies.”
“We have not had relations with the European Union since 2014. The iron curtain is practically coming down, but they should be careful not to squeeze anything. The European Union is not at all interested in understanding and listening to our interests. It is only interested in the decisions taken in Brussels. We have already seen in recent years that the decisions taken in Brussels are reaped in Washington,” he said.