US defends Biolabs in Ukraine

13 Sep 2022 22:09 

Source: Agencies

By Al Mayadeen English 

The United States admits once again to “biological research” in Ukraine, but still claims that there were no biological weapons in development there.

State Department spokesman Ned Price speaks during a news conference at the State Department in Washington, DC

The United States defended on Tuesday once again its biosecurity cooperation with Ukraine, claiming that their activities were in support of the Biological Weapons Convention.

According to US State Department spokesperson Ned Price, technical experts from the United States worked with Ukrainian delegations and “unambiguously” explained their cooperation.

Allegedly, the cooperative effort was conducted as part of the broader US Cooperative Threat Reduction Program and also included US assistance to Ukraine related to public health facilities, biosafety, biosecurity, and disease surveillance.

Russia sent in late July a formal request for a consultation meeting of the party states to the Biological Weapons Convention after it provided the states with documents proving how the US was funding a network of biological laboratories in Ukraine.

Price went on to dismiss Russia’s assertions about Washington developing biological weapons in Ukraine, claiming that Russia’s accusations were part of Moscow’s “ongoing disinformation campaign” and an attempt to “malign peaceful US cooperation with Ukraine.” 

Russia’s Ambassador to the UN, Vassily Nebenzia, said during a UN Security Council meeting that Moscow would activate Articles 5 and 6 of the Biological Weapons Convention BWC to investigate the Biolabs in Ukraine.

Article 5 of the BWC stipulates that “The states, parties to this Convention, undertake to consult one another and to co-operate in solving any problems which may arise in relation to the objective of, or in the application of the provisions of, the Convention. Consultation and co-operation pursuant to this Article may also be undertaken through appropriate international procedures within the framework of the United Nations and in accordance with its Charter.”    

Article 6 states that “any state party to this Convention, which finds that any other state party is acting in breach of obligations deriving from the provisions of the Convention, may lodge a complaint with the Security Council of the United Nations. Such a complaint should include all possible evidence confirming its validity, as well as a request for its consideration by the Security Council.”

The head of the Russian Federal Service for Surveillance on Consumer Rights Protection and Human Wellbeing said there are more than 300 US-funded civilian and military biological laboratories in the world, hinting that they are particularly concentrated in Ukraine.

The funders, according to documents provided by the Russian Ministry of Defense, are Hunter Biden and his investment fund, Rosemont Seneca, and George Soros and his notorious Open Society Foundation. 

The chief of the Radiation, Chemical, and Biological Defense Forces of the Russian Armed Forces Igor Kirillov said recently that the United States was planning on transferring its programs of biological research from Ukraine to post-Soviet republics, as well as Eastern European and Baltic states.

The US had been denying the existence of the biolabs for months before confirming Russia’s accusations, with Under Secretary for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland saying Washington had what she referred to as “biological research facilities” in Ukraine.

Nuland refused to cooperate with the Russian parliamentary commission on the operations of US biological laboratories in Ukraine, Deputy Speaker of Russia’s Federation Council Konstantin Kosachev said late last month.

Data on biological laboratories found in Ukraine does not help the case of the US against claims regarding its compliance with the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BTWC), Russian foreign ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova had said.

Moscow also exhibited documents confirming the organization of military-biological work by the Pentagon represented by the US Department of Defense Threat Reduction Department.

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Assisted Suicide of Europe (MUST SEE)

August 23, 2022

Alexander Dugin hospitalized over shock of losing his daughter

21 Aug 2022

Source: Agencies

By Al Mayadeen English 

After watching in shock as emergency services arrive at the scene of his daughter’s assassination, Russian political thinker and bereaved father, Alexander Dugin, is rushed to the hospital following a nervous breakdown.

Russian political thinker, bereaved father Alexander Dugin is in the hospital after the assassination of his beloved daughter, political commentator Darya Dugin, according to political analyst Sergei Markov. 

“Poor Alexander Dugin. He is in the hospital now. Our huge condolences,” he posted on his Telegram channel.

In an exclusive interview for Al Mayadeen, the expert in Russian affairs Bassam Al-Bunni confirmed that there are reports that Alexander Dugin was rushed to the hospital after suffering from a nervous breakdown following the assassination of his daughter.

On her account, a spokesperson for Russia’s Foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova posted via Telegram that “if any Ukrainian link was found, it would amount to state terrorism.”

Earlier, a large explosion tore into an SUV on a highway 20 km away west of Moscow, instantly killing its driver, who was identified as political commentator Darya Dugina, Russian political analyst and thinker Alexander Dugin’s daughter. Dugin the father is an influential veteran political commentator, also known as one of the Kremlin’s “ideological masterminds” and an occasional contributor to Al Mayadeen English.

The assassination was carried out at 21:35 Moscow time. Witnesses divulged that the explosion happened in the middle of the road, where debris and metal wreckage scattered in the air right before the car crashed into a fence, according to photos and videos.

According to emergency services, there was only one person inside the car, and it was a female body burned beyond recognition. 

Multiple Russian media sources and Telegram channels have reported that the victim was Darya Dugina, 30. According to videos circulating social media, her father arrived at the scene just after the explosion, devastated.

On Saturday evening, Dugin was giving a lecture in Moscow on “Tradition and History” at a traditional family festival in Moscow; Dugina attended the event as a guest. Reports are claiming that Dugin planned to leave the festival with his daughter, but instead took a separate car. Darya took her father’s Toyota Land Cruiser Prado.

On its account, the investigative committee of the Russian Federation reported that an explosive device that was planted under the car went off and the vehicle caught fire. It is worth noting that Forensic and explosive experts are still investigating the incident.

Darya, in July 2022, was placed on the UK sanctions list. Her father in 2014 and 2015 was sanctioned by the EU, US, and Canada.

Anti-Russian hate speech 

Anti-Russian hate speech has gone viral on social media with no restrictions and amid multiple incidents of violence in this context reported.

In one instance, Meta said in a statement in March that it has decided to allow the publication of calls for violence against Russians.

Russia’s Embassy in the United States responded to Meta’s change of policy, which was namely reflected on its Facebook and Instagram platforms, slamming it as “aggressive and criminal” and “outrageous”, because it allows for the “incitement of hatred and hostility towards Russians.” Furthermore, the Embassy said the company’s actions present more evidence “of the information war without rules declared on our country.”

Read more: Russia prosecutes Google over not removing banned content

“Media corporations have become soldiers of the propaganda machine of the Western establishment,” the Embassy’s statement read.

Facebook removed a post from the Russian Embassy to the UK’s Facebook page, in which it called into question the Western narrative of the attack on Mariupol hospital.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Russia’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN yesterday said the hospital had been in fact transformed into a base for Ukrainian nationalists targeting Russian troops.

Facebook removed the post under the pretense of it breaking the platform’s rules on “posting content about a violent tragedy, or victims of violent tragedies that include claims that a violent tragedy did not occur.”

Read next: You’re doing yourself a “disservice” following only Western media

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International condemnation against Israel grows as Gaza blitz continues

Russia referred to the Israeli strikes as a ‘provocation’, and has urged all sides to exercise restraint

August 06 2022

The father of five-year old Palestinian Alaa Qadoum carries her body during her funeral in Gaza City on 5 August, 2022. (Photo credit: REUTERS/Ashraf Amra)

ByNews Desk- 

Many nations have issued condemnations of Israel’s brutal airstrikes on the besieged Gaza Strip that started on 5 August.

So far, Tel Aviv’s bombing campaign has left over 100 injured and caused the deaths of 13 Palestinians, including a five-year old girl and three commanders of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ).

Palestinian resistance groups have launched several rocket attacks in retaliation, targeting nearby illegal settlements.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, Maria Zakharova, condemned on 6 August the escalation that “was provoked by Israeli air strikes,” adding that Moscow is deeply concerned over the breakout of large-scale conflict.

The official also called all sides to “exercise maximum restraint.”

Egypt has also condemned the attacks and warned against escalation, with an anonymous Egyptian security source telling Arab media: “We hope to reach a consensus to return to calm as soon as possible.”

Another Egyptian source revealed that a PIJ delegation may travel to Cairo on 6 August for talks with Egyptian officials.

In another strong condemnation of the Israeli aggression, Qatar called on the international community to “move urgently” to stop Israel’s continuous violence against civilians.

The Gulf state’s foreign ministry affirmed via statement the kingdom’s “firm position on the justice of the Palestinian cause, the legitimate rights of the brotherly Palestinian people, and the establishment of their independent state on the 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital.”

Jordan also called on Israel to “immediately stop its aggression,” warning of the dangerous consequences of increased escalation.

The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan vehemently denounced Tel Aviv’s actions on Saturday, with the Taliban foreign ministry calling on the international community to perform its duty and prevent Israeli crimes against Palestinians.

On the same day, the Islamic Republic of Iran issued its own condemnation of the attacks on Gaza.

“In its last night’s crime, the Zionist regime once again showed its occupier and aggressor nature to the world, but the resistance of the people of Gaza will speed up the decline of this child-killing regime,” Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi said on the morning of 6 August.

A statement by the Turkish Foreign Ministry on 5 August “strongly” condemned the Israeli bombardment, referring to the loss of civilian life as “unacceptable,” and urging “restraint and common sense.”

Turkey has recently strengthened its diplomatic relationship with Israel after a long period of tension, and has reportedly been deporting members of the Hamas resistance faction at Tel Aviv’s request and in a bid to further improve relations with Israel.

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Sitrep G7 (G20): Note from Maria Zakharova

July 08, 2022

💬 #Opinion by Maria Zakharova

Federal Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock:

“The fact that the Russian Foreign Minister spent most of his time during the talks not in the room, but outside it, highlights the fact that the Russian government is not a single millimetre closer to having talks.”

Can you even make any sense out of what she said? Outside what room? Utter nonsense.

The German public should be aware of the fact that their Foreign Minister Annalena is lying to them. Lavrov was among the audience the moment the G20 meeting started and about two hours later he began to hold bilateral talks with his colleagues who attended this forum in a room next door. This is what other ministers did as well, since in-person forums are held exactly for the purpose of holding meetings and having contacts. Otherwise, everyone would have gone online or sent out their speeches.

Or, maybe Baerbock thinks that the foreign ministers of Indonesia, Argentina, Brazil and other countries also were in the wrong room?

On the other hand, Germans are already beginning to realise who is in power in their country. More than half of the German citizens (58 percent) believe that German Foreign Minister Baerbock should have personally met and held talks with Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on the sidelines of the G20 ministerial which is taking place on the Indonesian island of Bali. On Friday, Der Spiegel published a survey by Civey pollster to that effect.

Now, the truth about Baerbock. She said this because the G7’s plan to boycott Russia at the G20 failed. Nobody supported the Western regimes. That is why they are fuming now.

Lavrov made his schedule in advance, including in it the G20 meeting and a dinner on behalf of the hosts, as well as numerous bilateral contacts and communication with international media. The materials, photos and videos are available on the Foreign Ministry’s website and on social media. And neither Annalena nor anyone else can change reality with their lies.


Maria Zakharova speaks to RT at SPIEF 2022

June 16, 2022

Sitrep Operation Z: Messy Grind again and more Great Walkback

June 15, 2022


By Amarynth

We start with the broader environment:

It is Zelensky’s decision, says the Chorus of the Great Walkback.

“The people and the government of Ukraine, led by President Zelensky, must decide on their own the issue of the possibility of territorial concessions.” – US Secretary of State Blinken. According to the head of the State Department, the United States does not intend to impose its position.

(You have lost, and you don’t want to say it Blinken!)

We see more and more western statements that Ukraine can end the war, via loss of territories. This is sheer desperation to avoid even an iota of responsibility for the loss of lives that they caused. They don’t know how to get out, they have to get out, they have to save face for their domestic audiences in the face of a spectacular loss of prestige, so again, Zelensky is being thrown under the bus and the Ukraine is an orphan.

Russia in any event says nyet! It will be on our terms, not yours.

A moment of skewed brilliance struck the former commander of NATO forces in Europe, Wesley Clark. He says that without the direct intervention of the Alliance, it will not be possible to end the war in the Ukraine. He is of course wrong, but his calculus is interesting:

Moreover, if NATO does not intervene in Ukraine, it may dissolve itself. “The idea that Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg is now advocating, and which finds support among other members of the alliance – that NATO can not actively intervene unless it is directly attacked – this idea has remained in the 90s.”

So, he wants to order the Russians to cease fire.

“It’s time to learn the lessons “NATO must intervene. Let’s officially recognize this and order the Russians to cease fire.”

According to this retired US Army general, the alliance must either “go beyond the outlined framework, or stop its activities.”  (But .. but, all this time, you said NATO was only a defensive alliance.)

Maybe, at last, he got it! The idea here is to push NATO back to its own borders and if it won’t go, the Russians will make it go!

Maria Zakharova, perfectly on time and topic during the St Petersburg Economic Forum:

“If you’re looking for media objectivity, best not focus on the West’s portrayal of Ukraine.”

Meanwhile in China, Xi Jinping signed a legal framework as to how China’s military forces will operate in a war, that is not a war. Like, as an example, a special military operation. And then, Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin had a telephone conversation today. “China is ready to continue to support each other with Russia on issues of sovereignty and security” – Xi Jinping in a conversation with Putin. Your guess here is as good as mine, but it looks like the two leaders are expecting more Special Military Operations, or military/technical work.

From there, we again follow Dmitry Medvedev: “I saw a message that Ukraine wants to receive LNG from its overseas owners under Lend-Lease with payment for delivery in 2 years. Otherwise, next winter it will simply freeze.
Just a question.

And who said that in two years Ukraine will even exist on the world map? Although the Americans don’t care anymore – they have invested so much in the “anti-Russia” project that everything else is a trifle for them.”

The Great Walkback is visible to all who care to look!

And he did not stop there and spoke on sanctions: It turned out that the specially gifted characters I wrote about began to realize that Russia is our beloved Motherland. And it also dawned on them that without our country they could not survive.
After all, otherwise they will not receive:
– food for their citizens;
– fertilizers to produce food for their citizens;
– sources of energy for the production of food and heating of their citizens;
– metals and other products for the production of machines and mechanisms for their citizens;
– fuel for European and American nuclear power plants, which provide 20-40% of electricity to their citizens.
The list goes on.
Now we are looking forward to the next package of European sanctions and Grandfather Joe’s great sanctions decisions, about which the authors of these same sanctions immediately begin to come up with circumvention schemes.
I will not remind you about inflation, prices for all types of fuel and forecasts for the fall of economies. All data is publicly available.
And this is only the first month of summer.
We are waiting for autumn… when we will have to collect the main sanctions harvest.
In the meantime, the locomotive of their economy of services and digital currencies is flying into the wall at full steam. Smile, gentlemen, smile!”

On the battlefield, it is mostly a replay now.

The work of the humanitarian corridor from the Azot plant in Severodonetsk was disrupted by the Ukrainian side on its first day, 1 person came out, the DPR military reported.

Latest Russian Mod Statement:

And Military Summary from Rumble is as detailed as possible during another Grind phase.

Some comments say that they still do not understand the small Ukrainian environment vis a vis the SMO and even less of the broader environment viz a viz a move to a multipolar world. Here is a Ukrainian map of the oblasts, and then, we follow with a Readovka map. Simply eyeball the two maps, and you will see the progress.

It’s education, stupid!

June 02, 2022


By Fẹmi Akọmọlafẹ

Maybe it is time the Collective West does something about its educational system.

Watching the performances of Russians and Western officials, one immediately notices that the much-touted and ultra-expensive “education “ provided in the West today is actually not up to par.

The Russian actions in Ukraine revealed a West where leaders remain emotional juveniles who continue to REACT jerkily to Russia’s deft moves. That’s when they are not busy projecting their own values and behavior onto the Russians.

Not only have the Russians vastly outplayed the West militarily, economically, and geopolitically, the actions/reactions of the West have boomeranged mightily to Russia’s advantage. The hyperinflation ravaging the West is just one example.

The exposure of the impotence of the much-touted NATO is also glaring for all to see; the Russians have made a mincemeat of what was touted as the best army in Europe, trained and equipped to NATO’s standards.

It is like every move by the Americans and their vassals in the EU was calculated to benefit the Russians.

This happened because they were ill-taught, and irrational resulting in pure emotional lash outs.

There’s simply no logic behind them.

A good example is how Western sanctions resulted in Russia earning jumbo income from selling less of its oil and gas.

Thank you very much!.

In addition to always being on top of their game, Russian officials always come across as well-educated, well-informed, well-mannered, sophisticated, cultured, and respectful. Western officials, on the other hand, attack the world as haughty, naughty, ill-mannered, ill-educated, uncultured, provincial, and narcissistic imbeciles.

They lack the elementary decorum necessary to engage peers in respectful manners. Ok, superciliousness, fueled by racist arrogance, might partly explain why they behave so, but we cannot discount the possibilities that they simply lack the education, the culture, and the home training required for civilized behavior, especially in encounters with other cultures.

The question needs to be asked how the Collective West ended up with the current gaggle of clowns holding positions of responsibility?

Examples abound aplenty: Just take a look at Sergey Lavrov and compare him with that dwarfish oaf, Anthony Blinken. Please, how did the once great US get to appoint that trashy lightweight idiot supposed to engage with a towering Diplomat of Mr Lavrov’s caliber?  Can’t a kindhearted one whisper in his ears how utterly ridiculous he appears and sounds when he issues stupid threats?

And how do we compare the seriously martial Sergei Shoigu with that Raytheon’s Uncle Tom arms merchant, Lloyd Austin?

And we then have the magnificent, confident, articulate, urbane and sophisticated woman Mr Lavrov appointed to speak for his Foreign Ministry. Please, do not take my word for it, just point out a Western official, male or female (forget the other stupid pronouns concocted by Western woke narcissists pumped up with hedonism), who can match Maria Zakharova in confident eloquence?

It didn’t use to be like this. The West was once great. I should know; I studied there.

Even as a student I noticed that there’s something terribly wrong with the type of education western institutions dish out to students starting in the late 1980s. It is quite noticeable, even to an undergraduate like myself, that there is a TOTAL disconnection between what is being taught at the universities and what transpires in REAL LIFE.

Take what is called Economics as an example. A degree, Bachelor of Science (B.Sc), is awarded to students who successfully complete the four-year program.

Any honest person will know that there’s absolutely nothing scientific in the potpourri of jargon western economists continue to string together to dazzle the gullible.

Meaningless figures and data are churned out to bamboozle people into believing that producing “services” is somehow superior to having mineral resources and a strong manufacturing base. The magicians, who masquerade as economists in the West, successfully cast spells that made people accept fancifully-printed papers, that are backed by nothing, in lieu of gold, diamond, cocoa, coal, titanium, and other real products.

These types of deliberate falsehoods and concoctions explain why Western economies are based on illusions and delusions as the Great V Putin exposed in recent encounters with the Collective West.

Arrogant and totally ignorant Westerners had no idea what the Russians had in stock for them when they started their stupid sanctions which they believed would destroy the Russian economy.

A little knowledge of history, geography, geopolitics, and geoeconomics should have informed the West that a country (the largest in the world) that is not only self-sufficient in food production, but produces almost all the metals required by all of the major industries and, in addition, is the world’s leading energy (oil and gas) producer, is not one to trifle or pick a fight with.

Most especially, not by a bunch of self-worshipping, resource-less, parasitical inconsequential nonentities like the EU states, who suffer from excessive self-regard.

There is little doubt the arrogance of the Collective West is fueled by ignorance which is a result of the poor quality of the education produced by the ideological institutions the West call universities, which have been transformed from places of rigorous learning into ones that produce only selfish, self-centered, narcissistic, hedonistic ideologues who are incapable of any thought beyond the ME!

Education reflects the mental attitude of the people. A society that recognizes neither wrong nor right, truth or falsehood cannot produce upright people who are capable of subjecting their thoughts and actions to deep reflections and applying the necessary breaks to curb their animalistic impulses.

Right from infancy, Westerners are brought up to regard everything as relative and to mix up rhetoric with actions.

Children in nurseries are told tales about the cow jumping over the moon. They are later introduced to the fable of a Santa Claus who deliver gifts through the chimney (let’s not mention the gross racism inherent in the Dutch version of that silly ‘tradition’). From here the westerner is told only tales about how his superior race brought the light of civilization to the rest of the world. Never mind the fact that half of the human drama passed before a European appeared on the scene. And never mind the documented fact that Europeans extinguished the light of civilization wherever they went. Let’s not even consider the absurdity of vandals and rapacious conquerors claiming to be civilizers! What civilization did Europe bring to the Americas? What superior knowledge, apart from that of guns, did the British bring to the Benin Kingdom?

A system of education that teaches everything about personal freedom but remains silent on responsibilities, basic values, and respect for elders and institutions cannot but produce self-seeking, self-affirming narcissistic individuals who will regard any suggestion or notion of rights of others as personal assaults.

A system of education that mistakes cheating and lying for cleverness can not but produce the type of Ambassador Michael McFaul who laughs,  when confronted with the lies the West told over Ukraine’s NATO membership and exclaimed: “That is the real world. Welcome to the real world.”

Basically, McFaul told us that the west exists in a real world where the telling of lies is the normal thing! Per his profile, McFaul is a professor in one of the top universities in the US. What type of minds will a man like McFaul produce?

Societies reflect the people that live in them. Western societies produced rugged individualistic-minded people who, in turn, find it difficult to cope with an international arena where the game is to give and take. Despite the fact that they proclaim their superiority over the rest of us, Western societies are incapable of operating on a level playing field. They cannot compete unless the cards are stacked in their favor. If they deny it, they simply should abandon their sense of entitlement and join the rest of humanity in playing by the rules agreed upon by the comity of nations.

Just take a good look at the current crop of Western leaders. The senile mannequin Biden has been a professional politician like for forever and a half. Macron is an investment banker, essentially one who conjures money from thin air, or what are derivatives, futures, etc?

The one in Germany, Scholz, is a lawyer. We all know that lawyers are born liars who make money by manipulating facts and telling barefaced lies. A great pity that we did not listen to Shakespeare and kill all the lawyers!

That lying, cheating, racist, boorish, unscrupulous, drunken addict like Boris Johnson became the leader of a former Great Britain shall forever remain one of the greatest mysteries of our time. It shall also go down as one of the worst things the British did to themselves.

Please, don’t get me wrong, I shed no tears for the inhabitants of that Island of iniquities.

Sadly, for them, the Collective West used to have very solid leaders. No matter how much one disagrees with them or hated their ideology, one cannot but respect Ronald Reagan, Helmut Kohl, Margaret Thatcher, Francois Mitterrand, and George Bush sr.

These men and women were true statesmen, prepared to defend their national interests while recognizing the need not to negate the interests of their peer actors in the global geopolitical arena.

Both Reagan and Thatcher were extreme ideologues, but they still both recognized that they cannot wish the USSR (Russia) away without destabilizing the global security architecture. They acted accordingly.

Alas, today, there’s not a single leader in the West with either the intellectual depth or the cultural sophistication to handle complex geopolitical issues.


  • At his first meeting with Chinese officials, the arrogant but amateurish US Secretary of State was promptly shot down by a Chinese official who told him point-blank: “The United States does not have the qualification to say that it wants to speak to China from a position of strength.”
  • In their encounter,  Russia’s FM Lavrov publicly humiliated the queen that poses as the UK’s FM, Truss, by exposing her shallowness and ignorance of basic geography.

With leaders such as these, it is little wonder that the west continues to self-destruct with the speed that few people thought possible.

First, western officials’ lack of simple courtesy, manners, and etiquette is quite stunning.

In many cultures, bullies are considered uncultured philistines and are promptly dispensed with. Even at the height of their war with Iraq we witnessed how US Secretary James Addison Baker continued to extend diplomatic and personal courtesies to his Iraqi counterpart, Tarik Aziz.

Puffed up with insane arrogance, the West rushed to impose thousands of sanctions on Russia. The belief was that the sanctions would cripple Russia and make it forgo the pursuits of its national interests.

So many things are terribly wrong with this assumption and it can only be the product of utterly stupid brains. Just a few: How could anyone in their right mind think that the Russians would have failed to consider ALL possibilities before they decided to confront the west in an existential struggle?

Forget about the Ukraine, Russian officials told whoever would listen that the Ukraine is just a sideshow; upending western domination is the ultimate goal. The Russians simply had enough of bullying and they planned to put an end to it.

Russians are world champions in both mathematics and chess playing, one must be utterly daft to even think that a Judoka like V Putin will go into battle without adequate preparations and preparedness.

Three months later, not only did Russia shrug off all the touted “sanctions from hell,’ but its economy is back on track, steady income are streaming into its treasury, and its currency, the Ruble, has emerged as the best currency in the world!

Instead of the Ruble turning into rubble as the dimwit Biden promised, Russians today worry more about the strength of their currency.

So, how did the West get it so spectacularly wrong?

It’s education, stupid.

While other societies stepped up on the teachings of mathematics and science, the West focused its attention on WOKISM.

The teaching of new pronouns became more important to a people that have become over-obsessed with their genitalias. Not even children were spared in the degenerate obsession to sexualize everything.

The west abandoned the teaching of history. So, people grew up not knowing anything about their past. Years of obscenely grotesque overconsumption produced inert citizens who became too decadent for their own good.

The consequences of these long years of easy living (off the back of foreign resources) are people who deluded themselves that their easy living was made possible by some immutable law of nature.

Westerners forgot that the institutions and the unfair international economic setups which guarantee them to live like exceptionalists were created by crafty, highly-educated, and far-seeing men and women who managed to collar the best advantages for the West.

Example: We saw how spectacularly the Euro has nosedived since V Putin asked Europeans to pay for his gas in his currency.

Not only have the ill-thought sanctions boomeranged badly on the sanctioneers, but the west has also ended up financing Russia’s military campaign in the Ukraine.

More sanctions from hell, please!

Fẹmi Akọmọlafẹ is a writer and a published author. He is a member of the Ghana Association of Writers.

His latest book, “Africa: a Continent on Bended Knees” is available on:
On Ghana Association of Writers Website:

Sitrep Operation Z: + consequences = petty Tabaquis howling

May 26, 2022

by Saker Staff

After the Russian forces took POPASNA, the pace increased. There are still battles, but the Russians are now rolling over everything else in the Donbas. The Ukrainians are being annihilated, more and more soldiers are refusing to fight, reports of mass surrenders pour in, and the Russian strategy of cauldrons and partial cauldrons is proving incredibly effective. It is a bloody war in that area exacerbated by the Ukrainian leaders because orders for a sensible retreat are not forthcoming.

Two videos today – both quite detailed:

This first video from Military Summary on Rumble, describes the logjam against sensible retreat.

This second video describes some of the very recent battles and how these brought the Ukraine to this point.  Very detailed and he draws his maps on the fly as he talks.

A few hours ago reports started filtering in of huge forces of the Russian Aerospace Forces passing over Lugansk towards the front, and powerful explosions thundered everywhere. The correspondent of “Russian Spring” from the capital of the LPR reports that he sees this for the first time, a lot of combat aircraft and helicopters swept over the city in several waves. Of course we do not know yet the what, why and where of this, excepting the Russian MoD report of this morning tells the story of the increased pace.

Take a look at the numbers:

💥High-precision air-based missiles have hit 48 areas of AFU manpower and military equipment concentration, 2 artillery batteries, and 2 ammunition depots near Nikolaevka and Berestovoe in Donetsk People’s Republic during the day.

▫️1 Ukrainian electronic reconnaissance centre near Dneprovskoe, Nikolaev Region, has been destroyed, including 11 servicemen from the combat unit, as well as 15 foreign engineering specialists who arrived with security guards.

▫️In addition, 1 Osa-AKM anti-aircraft missile system launcher has been destroyed near Nikolaevka in Donetsk People’s Republic, and 1 radar of the Ukrainian S-300 anti-aircraft missile system near Chuhuev in Kharkov region.

✈️💥Operational-tactical and army aviation have hit 49 areas of AFU manpower and military equipment concentration, 2 mortar crews, as well as 1 depot of missile and artillery weapons and ammunition.

▫️The attacks have resulted in the elimination of more than 350 nationalists and up to 96 armoured and motor vehicles.

💥Russian air defence means have shot down 1 Ukrainian Mi-24 helicopter over Husarovka, Kharkov Region. 1 Ukrainian Air Force military transport aircraft delivering ammunition and weapons has been also shot down in mid-air near Kremidovka, Odessa Region.

▫️In addition, 13 Ukrainian unmanned aerial vehicles have been shot down near Zelenyi Gai in Kherson Region, Bolshie and Malye Prokhody, Gavrilovka, Veseloe in Kharkov Region, and Epifanovka and Kirovsk in Lugansk People’s Republic, including 2 Soviet-made Tu-143 Reis jets near Melovatka in Lugansk People’s Republic.

💥Missile troops and artillery have hit 62 command posts, 407 areas of AFU manpower and military equipment concentration, 47 artillery and mortar units at firing positions, as well as 3 ammunition depots.

▫️Units and military equipment of the Ukrainian Armed Forces’ 10th Mountain Assault Brigade, which arrived to reinforce the Ukrainian grouping in Donbass, have been destroyed during unloading near Pokrovsk railway station in Donetsk People’s Republic.


Ukrainian General Staff says “The invaders are actively advancing in several directions at once.” — Specifically, the Russians are advancing simultaneously in Severodonetsk, Bakhmut, Avdeevsky, Novopavlovsk and Liman directions.


We also had a short explanation of why the perceived slow down in the Russian operation. The slowdown of Russia’s military operation in Ukraine is intentional with a view to evacuating the population and avoiding casualties among civilians, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said.  Russia’s Armed Forces are creating humanitarian corridors and announcing ceasefires to ensure the safe evacuation of residents from encircled settlements, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu explained, despite this approach stalling the progress of the country’s forces.  “Of course, this slows down the pace of the offensive, but it is being done deliberately to avoid civilian casualties,” he explained at a meeting of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) Council of Defense Ministers.

Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev spoke on the Ukraine specifically and geopolitics:

▪️All the goals set by the President of the Russian Federation during the special military operation will be achieved, it cannot be otherwise. Russia is not chasing deadlines in the course of a special military operation in Ukraine.

The ideal scenario for US-led NATO is an endlessly smoldering conflict in Ukraine.

▪️Nazism must either be eradicated by 100%, or it will raise its head in a few years, and in an even uglier form.

▪️Ukraine, if it had remained an independent country, and not controlled from outside, “would have long ago expelled all Nazi evil spirits from its land.”

▪️Moscow will be obliged to respond to the entry of Sweden and Finland into NATO, which is a direct security threat to Russia. Finland and Sweden will be accepted into NATO, despite the objections of Turkey and Croatia, “because Washington decided so.”

▪️The West is today obscuring Russia’s contribution to the preservation of other states in different historical periods with all its might.


The political and geopolitical situation is heating up and at the same time becoming more surreal.

They’re even dusting off Kissinger at Davos.  (Note Pepe Escobar’s ascerbic entry to his telegram channel at the end.)**

There is a small window of opportunity to wind down the armed conflict in Ukraine and find a peace settlement, former US secretary of state Henry Kissinger has told a gathering of Western elites in Davos, Switzerland. Beyond that, Russia may break from, the rest of, Europe for good and become a permanent ally of China, he said on Monday during a speech at the World Economic Forum.

“Negotiations on peace need to begin in the next two months or so, [before the conflict] creates upheavals and tensions that will not be easily overcome,” the 98-year-old veteran diplomat said of the crisis. The outcome will determine the rest of Europe’s relationships with Russia and Ukraine alike, he said. “Ideally, the dividing line should return to the status quo ante,” he said.

“I believe pursuing the war beyond that point would turn it not into a war about the freedom of Ukraine, which had been undertaken with great cohesion by NATO, but into a war against Russia itself,” he added.

There are more voices from Europe asking for a peace process to start but first, the Ukrainian response:

Ukrainian presidential advisor Alexey Arestovich resorted to obscene language to criticize those in the West urging Kiev to cede part of the country’s territory to Russia for the sake of peace.

“Go f**k yourselves with such proposals, you dumb f**ks, to trade Ukrainian territory a little bit! Are you f**king crazy? Our children are dying, soldiers are stopping shells with their own bodies, and they are telling us how to sacrifice our territories. This will never happen,” Arestovich said in an interview on Wednesday.

Soros calls for Putin’s defeat:  George Soros told the World Economic Forum in Davos the West needs a quick victory over Russia in Ukraine so it can focus on climate change

The process of ‘disowning’ the Ukraine has started.

Gen. Milley notes that the US has reopened military-to-military level talks with the Russians. His call to his Russian counterpart last week was “important” and it was “purposeful”

Of course, the talk of another peace plan is not born of care for people or human rights or democracy or deep held care for the Ukrainian people.  It is driven by desperation and is a desperate grasp at avoiding a psychological defeat bigger than Afghanistan.

TASS/ Russia’s State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin took to his Telegram channel to highlight that the US and its partners do not plan to provide real assistance to Ukraine.

  • Ukraine will only get 15% of the $40 billion promised by the US, he said.
  • “Washington and Brussels do not really intend to help Ukraine, or solve its economic and social issues. They only need Ukraine to fight Russia till the last Ukrainian,” Volodin said.
  • According to the recent aid to Ukraine legislation signed by President Joe Biden, 35% of the $40 billion is going to finance the US Armed Forces, he explained. Meanwhile, 45.2% of that amount is set to be spent on other countries, not Ukraine, while another 4.8% will be earmarked to support refugees, and restore the US diplomatic mission in Ukraine. “Ukraine will only receive 15% of the allotted sum,” the speaker revealed.
  • But Ukrainians will have to pay off the whole sum, he said. The US is aware that Kiev will not be able to service the debt in the future. “That is why they are seizing Ukraine’s last reserves, including grain, which is what we are seeing right now”.

Quo Vadis Ukraine?

A list of those that want a piece of the pie is shaping up. Of course, Poland is not suddenly in love with the Ukraine without a reason.  They want their piece of the land pie. I suspect Hungary is also not innocent in this matter. Will the Ukraine be apportioned? Or will it lose its nation-state status completely, and cease to exist? Nobody knows because nobody knows the Russian plan. In Europe and the US/NATO, fear is taking hold. Nobody knows where Russia plans to stop after liberating the two new Republics, Donesk and Luhansk. Is this the moment that they will choose to push NATO back to its agreed borders?

Maria Zakharova noted that these peace proposals that are appearing (talking about the Italian one specifically) could show that Rome is perhaps “beginning to think about the depressing consequences of the military psychosis that was caused by the reaction of the West to the special military operation of Russia in Ukraine” – and the supposed plan could be an attempt “to offer some alternatives to the current escalation, which threatens to develop into a full-scale military conflict between Russia and NATO.”

The deputy chair of the Russian Security Council, former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, said that “any peace proposal built purely in the interest of NATO and the Western world order should simply be ignored.”

“Or rather, their authors should be told to go in a certain direction,” Medvedev said.

Russia is ‘building back better’ and major reconstruction is starting as well as President Putin signed a decree relaxing rules for granting Russian citizenship to residents of Ukraine’s Zaporozhye and Kherson Region.

The amendments are added to the decree that previously introduced a similar procedure for residents of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics (DPR and LPR).

Russia continues to do business.  Delegations from over 90 countries have confirmed their participation in the 25th edition of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) scheduled for June.  Russia and Iran also agreed to implement the MIR payment card system in Iran.

That is it for today. Enjoy your discussion and careful on the Ukie propaganda. It is still everywhere.

**Escobar Telegram Channel:


War criminal Kissinger’s performance at Davos should be summed up as yet another massive failure of his master’s trademark Divide and Rule.

Ukraine/404 has always been a sort of Rubicon in terms of downsizing Russia (think Brzezinski).

It consumed A LOT of capital – physical and political. It was THE red line – success or failure – setting the stage for the triumph of the NWO and its top secretion, The Great Reset.

Kissinger – even as a mere Rockefeller messenger boy – was at the center of this racket for DECADES. It was Kissinger, under Rockefeller’s orders, that groomed cypto Dr. Evil Klaus Schwab to build the WEF and the Davos ethos.

Even if Davos is a mere outlet for the people who really run the show, the WEF remains the premier Influence Scoundrels club on the planet bent on forcing their agenda all across the spectrum. Still toxic after all these years. Yet now even Kissinger knows it’s bound to fail.

دبلوماسي أميركي سابق: كذبنا على الأوكرانيين

 الإثنين 23 أيار 2022


أقر السفير الأميركي السابق لدى موسكو مايكل ماكفول، أمس، بأنّ الدبلوماسيين الأميركيين الذين وعدوا كييف بالانضمام إلى حلف “الناتو” على مدى السنوات الماضية “كانوا يكذبون عليها».

ورداً على سؤال حول كذب واشنطن على المسؤولين في كييف بشأن آفاق انضمام أوكرانيا إلى حلف “الناتو”، أجاب ماكفول: “نعم، نعم، هذا هو العالم الواقعي».

في المقابل، علقت المتحدثة الرسمية باسم وزارة الخارجية الروسية ماريا زاخاروفا على تصريحات السفير الأميركي بالقول: “كما تقول الحكاية الشعبية “على خطى فرقة بريمن”.. وهنا سقط البنطال الأنيق عن الحمار ورأى الجميع ذيله العادي”.

يذكر أنّ الرئيس الأوكراني، فلاديمير زيلنسكي، قال في آذار/مارس الماضي، بأنّ على «أوكرانيا التصالح مع فكرة مفادها أنها لن تكون جزءاً من حلف شمال الأطلسي».

وأضاف زيلنسكي: «لقد سمعنا طوال أعوام، بشأن الأبواب المفتوحة المفترضة، لكننا سمعنا أيضاً أنه لا يمكننا الانضمام إليه. هذا صحيح، ونحن في حاجة إلى الاعتراف بذلك».

وفي سياق متصل، رأت عضو الكونغرس السابقة تولسي غابارد أن عدم وجود أهداف أميركية واضحة في أوكرانيا قد يؤدي إلى تكرار السيناريو الذي واجهته بلادها في العراق أو أفغانستان.

وأوضحت غابارد، في تصريح لقناة “فوكس نيوز”، أن “إدارة الرئيس جو بايدن فشلت في تحديد المهام في هذا الصراع”، مشيرة إلى أنه “يمكننا أن ننظر إلى أفغانستان والعراق، وهو مثال حديث جداً لما يحدث عندما لا تكون لديك مهمة محددة”.

وتابعت غابارد أن «المواطنين الأميركيين قد شعروا بالفعل بآثار العقوبات، المتمثلة في ارتفاع أسعار السلع الأساسية»، في إشارة إلى العقوبات الغربية، التي قادتها الولايات المتحدة ضد موسكو.

ولفتت إلى أنّ “الشعب الأميركي له الحق في معرفة كم تكلفه أوكرانيا، وما الذي سيحصل عليه نتيجة اهتمام واشنطن بدول ما بعد الاتحاد السوفياتي”.

مقالات مرتبطة

Briefing by Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, Moscow, May 18, 2022 (Extensive)

May 20, 2022

Table of contents

  1. Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov to attend BRICS Foreign Ministers’ meeting
  2. Sergey Lavrov’s participation in the 100 Questions for the Leader project at the Yevgeny Primakov Gymnasium
  3. Update on Ukraine
  4. Involving minors in Ukrainian nationalist formations
  5. Statement by Western leaders accusing Russia of cyberattacks against the Ukrainian communications infrastructure
  6. EU allegations of Russia’s “responsibility” for global food insecurity
  7. Biological warfare research in Ukraine
  8. Closing Canada’s CBC bureau in Moscow
  9. Situation at the JCPOA reactivation talks
  10. The situation in the Republic of Moldova
  11. Russia’s stance on Cyprus settlement
  12. Growing terrorist activity in Burkina Faso and neighbouring countries
  13. Desecration of Soviet military graves in Gdansk
  14. Desecrating a memorial to Generalissimo Alexander Suvorov’s comrades who died when crossing the Alps in 1799, in the Shollenen Gorge (Switzerland)
  15. 13th International Economic Summit Russia – Islamic World: KazanSummit 2022
  16. 2nd Kostomarov Forum
  17. Eurasian Economic Forum in Bishkek

Answers to media questions:

  1. Russia’s withdrawal from the Council of the Baltic Sea States
  2. The transportation of grain from Ukraine
  3. The death of Al Jazeera journalist
  4. Calls for “regime change” in Russia
  5. Ukraine’s decision to nationalise Russian banks’ property
  6. Russia’s reaction to Finland and Sweden’s decision to join NATO
  7. Mass shooting in the United States
  8. Russian diplomats working in new conditions
  9. Russia’s reaction to the Western embargo on Russian energy exports
  10. Finland’s economic losses
  11. The future of Ukrainian militants who surrendered at Azovstal
  12. Situation with individuals detained in Ukraine
  13. Russia’s stand on NATO membership for Ukraine and Finland
  14. Russia’s response measures to Finland’s NATO membership
  15. Exchange of prisoners in Ukraine
  16. The possibility of Russia-Ukraine talks
  17. Trilateral working group
  18. Meeting of the Armenian-Azerbaijani commission on border delimitation and border security
  19. Acts of vandalism in Nagorno-Karabakh
  20. CSTO response to developments in Afghanistan
  21. Escalation in the Gorno-Badakhshan autonomous region of Tajikistan

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov to attend BRICS Foreign Ministers’ meeting

On May 19, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will attend a meeting of the Foreign Ministers of the BRICS countries via videoconference.

The ministers will review global and regional issues, as well as the problems of maintaining peace and security and settling acute international conflicts. They will focus on coordinating the approaches of the BRICS nations at key multilateral platforms and intensifying cooperation in countering new challenges and threats.

The ministers will review the BRICS strategic partnership in three key areas – political, economic and humanitarian – in the context of preparing for the upcoming 14th summit of the association.

At the initiative of the Chinese Presidency in the Council of Foreign Ministers, a separate session will take place in BRICS-plus format with the participation of the foreign ministers from a number of developing nations.

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Sergey Lavrov’s participation in the 100 Questions for the Leader project at the Yevgeny Primakov Gymnasium

On May 23, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will meet with students at the autonomous non-profit general education organisation Yevgeny Primakov Regional Gymnasium as part of the 100 Questions for the Leader project.

The project represents a special format for trustworthy conversations held by students with famous politicians and outstanding representatives of science, art and sports. It provides a priceless experience for direct dialogue between the rising generation and today’s leaders.

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Update on Ukraine

The special military operation continues in Ukraine. As Russian leaders have said more than once, it is going according to plan, and new territories are being freed from the Nazis every day.

The Ukrainian military personnel and militants in Azov nationalist units that entrenched themselves in the underground bunkers of the Azovstal Plant, began to surrender in Mariupol this week. According to the Russian Defence Ministry, 959 Ukrainian nationalists, including 51 with severe wounds, have laid down their arms over two days. They receive medical aid at the Novoazovsk hospital in the DPR, and the rest were sent to a pretrial detention centre in Yelenovka in the suburbs of Donetsk. Indicatively, on May 17, this centre was shelled by the Armed Forces of Ukraine with multiple launch rocket systems (MLRSs). The Kiev regime has always treated its citizens like this, and this case was no exception.

Russian leaders had repeatedly stated that resistance was senseless and announced the opening of humanitarian corridors for militants and Ukrainian military personnel to leave the Azovstal Plant after laying down their arms. They were urged to stop the hostilities. In the meantime, the Kiev regime was doing all it could to prevent civilians, military personnel and militants from leaving the plant. Why? They were brainwashing the public.

It was Russia that urged the UN to look into this situation and persuade the Kiev regime to let people walk out. Later, Russia organised humanitarian corridors in cooperation with the UN and the International Committee of the Red Cross. I would like to emphasise that the initiative on announcing and opening these corridors was ours.

The wounded troops are provided with professional medical help. This fact is being turned upside down and misrepresented in the Ukrainian and international media. Remember the footage showing how the militants and the Armed Forces of Ukraine treat POWs in Ukraine? Everyone saw it. It horrified many, others pretended not to have seen it. Russian POWs were shot to death by militants from the nationalist units that became part of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

Russia has adopted a different approach. You see footage showing professional help being provided to the wounded [Ukrainian troops]. It is not being provided “for show.” It is provided to real individuals regardless of their background. Humanitarian law is not just something we abide by; it is of fundamental importance for us. No one should have any doubt about this.

According to Ukrainian POWs, the military leadership of Ukraine forbids the troops to retreat or surrender. Their key goal is to destroy as much civilian infrastructure as possible in order to leave behind uninhabitable ruins and make it hard to restore peaceful life. This is not our messaging, but the testimony received from the Ukrainian side over the past weeks.

The nationalists, who have long been using the tactics of ISIS terrorists, do not hesitate to use kindergartens, schools and hospitals as ammunition depots and strongholds. They are not hiding this. They take pictures inside preschools or with preschool buildings in the background to show how they fight there. The civilians are not allowed to evacuate. They are forcing people to leave their apartments so that they can set up firing positions there. They are driving people to basements that are used by militants or as weapons depots. The other day, Ukrainian nationalists began to bring in ammunition and deployed air defence systems on the grounds of the Odessa film studio. The territorial defence force militants go door-to-door in order to identify residents who do not accept the nationalist way of thinking. They are taken away to unknown locations and there’s no information about the fate of many of them.

Earlier, the Zaporozhye administration banned the evacuation of civilians under the pretext of security. All attempts by the citizens to leave the city in private vehicles and on foot are stopped by the territorial defence militants at checkpoints. Those who resist are subjected to physical violence. Their vehicles are seized and they are sent back on foot.

On May 16, Ukrainian nationalists used the Smerch MLRS to attack Kherson’s residential areas. There are no Russian troops in Kherson, which the Ukrainian side is well aware of. This means they specifically targeted civilians in retaliation for supporting Russia’s actions. This is yet another war crime committed by the Kiev regime. Fortunately, all 10 missiles have been intercepted by Russian air defence systems.

Unfortunately, we do not see the international organisations, Western countries or their media respond to the criminal methods used by the Armed Forces of Ukraine. To be sure, it’s because there is no response. Moreover, the Western countries continue massive arms supplies to the Kiev regime. We consider this as direct support for neo-Nazis and an effort to make the fighting last as long as possible. We cannot ignore the fact that Western weapons are used to kill Russian troops and shell Russian territory.

Arms deliveries are running into the billions of dollars which is comparable to military budgets of large states. The United States, Great Britain, France, Canada, Poland and the Baltic countries are doing the most to arm Kiev. Washington alone sent $3.8 billion worth of military equipment to the Kiev regime which is close to the military budgets of Austria, Portugal and Finland. The US Congress is considering a proposal to provide another $40 billion in “aid”, including about $25 billion worth of military equipment. This is half the military budget of Germany and France. I would like to draw the attention of the US public not so much to the size, which is comparable with the military budgets of other countries, as to the needs of the American people. They can put these funds to good use. If this money were sent as subsidies, aid, or sponsorship related in some way to humanitarian aid, one would understand it. But money is being sent to the Kiev regime for it to kill and to continue this phase of the crisis.

More and more weapons abandoned by the Armed Forces of Ukraine are becoming the spoils of war for the People’s Militia of the Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics and the Armed Forces of Russia. These include Javelin and NLAW ATGMs, Starstreak and Stinger MANPADS, Bayraktar drones, Switchblade loitering munitions, Skynet Longbow EW systems, CAESAR and PzH 2000s self-propelled and M777 towed howitzers.

EU, US and UK officials keep saying that “victory must be achieved on the battlefield,” that “Russia must sustain a strategic defeat” and “cannot be allowed to win.” All these statements, in addition to the trade and economic blockade that has in effect been imposed on our country and the hybrid war unleashed against it, prove once again that the Western countries are waging war against Russia in Ukraine and that Ukraine itself and its citizens are an expendable resource for them. Our Chinese partners used the expression “cannon fodder.”

In their information war, the Western countries resort to outright lies. They are trying to accuse our country of creating a global food shortage. We commented on this many times. Each time we cite facts, figures and other information that cannot be refuted. But nobody is trying to refute them. Western-spread lies are not supposed to be refuted. They are too absurd to comment on. It is forgotten that crisis phenomena in the world food market are linked with the West’s accumulated mistakes and miscalculations in macroeconomic, energy and agricultural policy. The coronavirus pandemic has contributed as well. In the middle of 2020, Executive Director of the UN World Food Programme David Beasley warned about the threat of “famines of biblical proportions.” Unilateral Western sanctions exacerbated this trend. So, millions of people will have to go hungry because of the geopolitical ambitions, egotism and stupidity of the collective West.

At the same time, we are seeing a striving of the Western curators to take out of Ukraine everything that may be of some value. This is also a repetition of history of 80 years ago. Hundreds of grain carriers are crossing the Ukrainian border on the way to Europe. The Kiev regime has organised massive daily exports of agricultural products to Europe in exchange for weapons by road and rail, as well as by river on the Danube to Romania via the port of Ismail.

Think of what is happening. Against the backdrop of statements by the collective West about the imminent famine (the Kiev regime is supposed to trust the West), the leaders of Ukraine are getting rid of food products. Ukrainian citizens need them now. The Armed Forces of Ukraine also need them since the Kiev regime is not going to stop hostilities. However, food products are being sent abroad instead. Where to? To NATO countries. The Ukrainians receive weapons in exchange for these products so that they can continue killing themselves. This is not Nazism. This are even more terrifying maniacal ideas that are even worse than the misanthropic concepts applied to the population of Ukraine, Russia and the rest of the former USSR in the middle of the 20th century.

These are tremendous amounts of grain, maize, oil crops and livestock animals. On May 10 of this year, US President Joseph Biden said that Washington was thinking about ways of exporting from Ukraine 20 million tonnes of grain, supposedly with a view to reducing prices in the world markets. You know how much the United States and the White House care about the needs of hungry people in Africa and Asia, how much they want all people in the world to live a better life, eat well and be wealthier. We know this bewitching American pacifism and striving to do good for everyone. But this is not the case. This is about robbing Ukraine, its citizens and military of the last things they have. Washington obviously is not concerned about what the Ukrainians will be left with after this feast. Ukrainian citizens did not believe us 10 years ago and five years ago. Maybe it’s time to wise up. To realise that they are being deprived of the last things they have. Food products, grain – the results of their labour – are being taken out of the country. When we were in school and university, we were told that the fascists and Nazis hauled away Ukrainian natural soil by railway and this was presented as the supreme manifestation of their hatred for Soviet citizens. Now the logic is even more gruesome – Ukrainian citizens are being deprived of the fruits of their labour at a time when their country is engaged in hostilities.

For our part, we are paying close attention to the humanitarian situation in the liberated areas and facilitating the restoration of peaceful life. Russian military are clearing Ukrainian mines in cities and farming lands. People in the DPR, LPR and a number of regions in Ukraine have already been supplied with 20,000 tonnes of basic necessities, food products, medications and medical devices.

We regret that the United States, Britain and several European countries are supporting and sponsoring those who are preaching in Ukraine the ideas of aggressive nationalism and neo-Nazism. They continue supplying the Kiev regime with arms and robbing the Ukrainian people. However, these efforts will not change the situation.

As the Russian leaders said more than once, Russia will achieve the goals of its military operation on denazifying and demilitarising Ukraine, defending the DPR and the LPR and removing the threats to its own security.

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Involving minors in Ukrainian nationalist formations

As the nationalist formations of Ukraine continue to be driven out of Donbass, new facts have come to light which confirm the involvement of children in these hate-crazed units. We have repeatedly stated that right-wing radical organisations operating under the patronage of the Kiev regime have systematically spread extremism among minors in order to embed the ideas of militant nationalism in Ukrainian society.

Neo-Nazis from Azov began large-scale recruitment of children back in 2015 when, upon the initiative of the National Corps leader Andrey Biletsky, they set up the Youth Corps’ “children’s camps.” In 2015, they took in children aged 9 to 18 and since 2016, 7 to 18.

A military youth wing called National Squads was formed at the National Corps in 2018. Hundreds of young people over the age of 14 joined it. The instructors from Azov taught them how to fight the “enemies of Ukraine,” including with firearms.

The specialised Youth Corps’ needs are covered by the Ukrainian state budget. Does that sound familiar? In 2019, organisations associated with the National Corps received $17,000 to hold events for children and youth. We see it. And we know what kind of values people with Azov insignia on their sleeves and nationalist and neo-Nazi symbols are teaching ​​young people. There are training camps for teenagers such as Azovets, Bukovynets, and Dnepryanin in different parts of the country. Teenagers were lured through social media and messengers.

Eyewitnesses are saying that neo-Nazis from Azov do not limit themselves to “children’s camps” and have expanded their group by bringing aboard minor orphans which fact is corroborated by the situation at the Piligrim orphanage in Mariupol. Azov worked closely with the children from this orphanage training them in combat, including sharp shooting, during eight years beginning in 2014. Reportedly, in 2014, children from Piligrim helped the Ukrainian army dig trenches outside Mariupol and build checkpoints later in October. Residents of Mariupol say that during the events of February-April 2022, the Respublika Piligrim Children’s Rehabilitation Centre was the headquarters of the territorial defence, where militants from Azov and other radical groups were based. There’s video evidence showing that teenagers from Piligrim took part in the hostilities on the side of the neo-Nazis, and also set fire to civilian homes.

“The neo-Nazi Ukrainian group Azov-operated Piligrim orphanage in Mariupol is a prototype of Ukraine that the Nazis wanted to build and what it would inevitably become if it were not for the special operation by the Russian Armed Forces,” Alexey Selivanov, former (until 2014) Advisor to the Defence Minister of Ukraine and Deputy Head of the Main Directorate of the Interior Ministry for the Zaporozhye Region, said. This is what someone who served in the Armed Forces of Ukraine had to say.

According to Selivanov, Piligrim can stand in for all of Ukraine, and the orphanage, in which children were converted into militants, is a clear confirmation of the fact that something drastic had to be done with this Ukrainian project.

These facts clearly show that Ukraine violated its obligations under the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child concerning the involvement of children in armed conflicts. When ratifying this international treaty in 2005, Ukraine declared that the minimum age for voluntary (on a contract basis) enlistment into national armed forces was 19.

We call upon relevant international organisations, such as the UN and the OSCE, as well as the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General on Children and Armed Conflict, to pay special attention to Kiev’s involvement of children in criminal neo-Nazi organisations and spreading of radical ideas among minors.

There is no need to pretend that in a surge of patriotism these children went to the barricades in February 2022. They have been trained to make war for many years. And the militants of the nationalist battalions are the ones who did it.

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Statement by Western leaders accusing Russia of cyberattacks against the Ukrainian communications infrastructure

The West continues its attempts to portray Russia as a cyber-aggressor. We perceive the recent statements, made on May 10, 2022, by foreign policy agencies of the United States, the United Kingdom and their allies in precisely this context. These statements accuse Russia of launching cyberattacks against the Ukrainian communications infrastructure in February 2022. Predictably, they did not provide any evidence. As usual, they follow their favourite “highly likely” logic.

Western capitals think of themselves as supreme rulers of cyberspace. They rubberstamp accusations that have nothing to do with reality. They probably believe that they will also get away with this anti-Russia provocation. They think all states will perceive this propaganda as a sufficient reason for bringing to account culprits arbitrarily appointed by the US administration. After depleting the potential of sanctions, they are now resorting to other ploys from their rich cinematographic legacy, including promises to pay handsomely anyone who will testify in favour of Washington’s allegations.

Obviously, the policy of intimidation and deception is called on to camouflage the futile US attempts to impose its own perception of an international political order, to conceal its own flaws regarding protection of personal data, the right to privacy and inability to maintain constructive cooperation between specialised agencies to thwart illegal activities in the IT sphere.  Consequently, they want to continue their long-term digital dictate against the public at home and in other countries and to plunder their intellectual resources with the help of companies and agencies affiliated with security services.

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EU allegations of Russia’s “responsibility” for global food insecurity

The EU, the United States and their supporters have unleashed a campaign accusing Russia of provoking a global food crisis. The main thesis is that Moscow’s actions in Ukraine, including the “blocking” of the Ukrainian grain exports via Black Sea ports, are leading to food shortages and hunger in the world’s poorest countries. We know how the “collective West” is “helping” these countries. They are considering ways to turn ordinary countries into poorest states (by transporting grain to their own countries), and they never or hardly ever think about the poorest countries.

As usual, Brussels is deceiving the international community by openly distorting the reasons for the current situation. The EU is openly trying to use the allegation of Russia’s “responsibility” for the deteriorating global food security to convince other countries to support the anti-Russia policies of the West. They simply tell the countries that have a neutral and balanced position that there is a dire shortage of food in their region and that this situation can be remedied if these countries assume the anti-Russia position. They ask them to sign certain documents, vote the “right way” or make a required statement, saying that this will ensure food supplies. It’s a staple of the genre, not a new invention. At the same time, Brussels is using open blackmail, offering food for loyalty.  It has not yet stooped to heavy-handed interference, but this approach cannot be ruled out in the ideological and political spheres. Countries are being forced to make a choice, and this is being done with media assistance.

Meanwhile, the EU has done nothing to prevent the “Ukrainian crisis” and continues to send weapons to Kiev, which makes it responsible for tensions on the global food market. There are numerous indications of this.

The EU has openly declared a total trade and economic war on Russia. We know that Washington actually pressured the EU into doing this, which the United States has openly admitted and trumpeted. The EU politicians who are advocating and shouting about new sanctions are comfortable with the fact that Russia is a global leader in the supply of basic agricultural products, which have no or very few alternatives, such as grain, barley, sunflower seeds and feed crops, as well as mineral fertilisers, a major share of which are exported to the low-income countries that are facing food shortages. The EU politicians do not care about this, because nobody has ever called them to account.

The disruption of trade, logistics and financial chains and, consequently, a sharp rise in food prices throughout the world are a direct result of the irresponsible adoption of even more anti-Russia restrictions and threats of increased sanctions pressure on Russia. Russia’s bank settlements and flights to and from EU countries have been blocked. Isn’t this a direct cause of the situation on the food market? Only those who live in a vacuum can think so. Brussels has adopted unprecedented restrictions on Russian fertiliser exports and individual sanctions on major Russian fertiliser producers and exporters. The declared goal of this policy is to undermine Russia’s economy, including agriculture, which moved into top gear over the past years. Blinded by their hatred for Russia, nobody stopped to think about the consequences for the countries which traditionally depend on our supplies. When they became aware of what happened, they attempted to shift the blame on Russia. It’s crossing the line beyond good and evil.

Cynically claiming to be concerned about humanitarian matters, Brussels is rushing to offer its help. They simply love to create problem and then break their brains over them. The question is who should tackle the current problem. The so-called “solidarity lanes” plan to improve EU-Ukraine connectivity for grain export, which the European Commission presented the other day, is nothing other than requisitioning. Actually, Brussels has declared a full-scale mobilisation campaign to remove the available Ukrainian grain to the EU. When Ukraine, prompted by the West, shouted about the Holodomor, when grain was taken from producers in a bad harvest year, and presented it as the genocide of Ukrainians, the West applauded and looked for other pretexts to accuse Russia of unimaginable sins. What will it do now? It has announced that “hungry times” are coming. Why are they trying to remove the last remaining grain stocks from Ukraine? This is impossible, but it’s a fact. This is requisitioning.

The EU plan provides for creating alternative lanes to export Ukrainian agricultural produce to the EU and other countries, because the sea route has been blocked through Kiev’s fault. The EU will ease the formalities, expedite the sending of additional freight rolling stock, vessels and lorries to the Ukrainian border for transporting grain, transfer mobile grain loaders, make rail slots available for these exports, and suspend customs duties on Ukrainian exports for a year. Is this a licence to take advantage of Ukraine’s situation? To grab what you can lay your hands on? That’s rich!

Brussels views the large-scale transportation of grain from Ukraine as part of its “fundamental geostrategic goal.” The EU intends to achieve it even though international experts believe that Ukraine’s grain harvest will be much smaller this year. They expect problems in Ukraine, and yet they are taking away its last grain stocks. To present this as a noble act, Brussels has announced that it is guided above all by a desire to protect the world from Russia, which allegedly wants to take advantage of the global insecurity problem it presumably created in the first place, and to “steal” Ukraine’s share on the global market, so as to gain geopolitical weight in its confrontation with the West by supplying food to the most vulnerable poor countries. This is inhuman. We would like to tell our EU neighbours that this is not our but their methods.

The soaring prices of grain, feed crops and fertilisers, not to mention energy, and the unprofitability of farming and fishing businesses were a major concern for the EU member states long before the current crisis. Take a look at your own statements, reports and television shows. In late March 2022, a regular EU summit adopted a decision on the need to ensure food affordability in the member states. Several weeks later, the European Commission presented a detailed initiative on the urgent transportation of 20 million tonnes of Ukrainian grain, which can seriously undermine the food security of Ukraine. However, Brussels, which is being guided by “the worse for Ukraine, the better for the West” principle, is not concerned about that.

We urge the international community not to rise to Western provocations, to accept reality and to rely on facts, since the West is willing to use the global food security problems, which it itself is actively creating and which did not appear yesterday, to attain its time-serving political interests. This is a historical fact. The “collective West” is accusing us because it is “highly likely” that we did it because we “always did it.” They say that we “always” did it, but they are not providing examples, let alone any proof. The West is plundering Ukraine now, just as the colonial West plundered other countries in the past, taking whatever it needed. It is doing exactly the same now.

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Biological warfare research in Ukraine

The Russian Federation has obtained materials indicating that biological laboratories in Ukraine operating with support from the Pentagon’s Defence Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) and its affiliated companies – Black and Veatch and CH2M Hill – engaged in biological warfare research in violation of Articles I and IV of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production and Stockpiling of Bacteriological (Biological) and Toxin Weapons and on their Destruction (BTWC).

The laboratories conducted research into dangerous and highly dangerous pathogens in the interests of the Pentagon’s National Centre for Medical Intelligence, with the BSL-3 Central Reference Laboratory based at Ukraine’s Mechnikov Anti-Plague Research Institute in Odessa playing the key role in these programmes.

The following research centres were also actively involved in their implementation:

– State Scientific and Research Institute of Laboratory Diagnostics and Veterinary and Sanitary Expertise,  Institute of Veterinary Medicine of the Academy of Agrarian Sciences, and the Central Sanitary and Epidemiological Station of the Ukrainian Ministry of Health in Kiev;

– Research Institute of Epidemiology and Hygiene of the Ukrainian Ministry of Health, State Laboratory of Veterinary Medicine, and Regional Centre for Disease Control and Prevention of the Ukrainian Ministry of Health in Lvov;

– State Regional Laboratory of Veterinary Medicine in Dnepr;

– Regional Centre for Disease Control and Prevention in Kherson;

– Sanitary and Epidemiological Station Laboratory in Ternopol;

– Transcarpathian Regional Laboratory Centre of the Ukrainian Ministry of Health in Uzhgorod;

– Regional Laboratory Centre of the Ukrainian Ministry of Health in Vinnitsa;

– National Scientific Centre Institute of Experimental and Clinical Veterinary Medicine in Kharkov.

Thirty Ukrainian laboratories in 14 cities were involved in full-scale biological warfare research in Ukraine. The registration card of the relevant programme was signed by Deputy State Secretary of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine Viktor Polishchuk.  The legal framework was provided by the Agreement between the Department of Defenсe of the United States of America and the Ministry of Health of Ukraine Concerning Cooperation in the Area of Prevention of Proliferation of Technology, Pathogens and Expertise That Could be Used in the Development of Biological Weapons.   The RC determined the commissioner of the work – the Pentagon’s Defence Threat Reduction Agency – and a list of biological facilities.

The employees working with dangerous pathogens in Ukraine were US citizens who had diplomatic immunity. The group included biological weapons experts; they established contacts with Ukrainians, who were previously involved in Soviet biological warfare programmes. For example, Project UP-8 studying the Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever and Hantaviruses is evidence that all serious high-hazard research was directly supervised by US specialists.

The documents obtained allow us to state that the Ukrainian biological laboratories (including divisions of the Central Sanitary and Epidemiological Directorate of the Ukrainian Defence Ministry) engaged in activities aimed at enhancing the pathogenic properties of agents inducing plague, anthrax, tularaemia, cholera, and other deadly diseases, using synthetic biology methods.

On February 24, 2022, the Ukrainian Health Ministry publicly issued instructions to immediately dispose of the reserves of dangerous and especially dangerous pathogens stored at biological facilities, which proves that the Kiev regime did try to sweep any traces of these operations under the carpet. The review of the disposal statements confirmed that these facilities worked with the plague, anthrax, leptospirosis, and brucellosis agents. In the Lvov laboratory alone, they destroyed 232 containers of leptospirosis agents, 30 of tularemia, 10 of brucellosis, and 5 containing plague pathogens, and in total, over 320 containers. This inventory, coupled with the excessive quantity of pathogens, demonstrates that we are dealing here with biological weapons programmes carried out in violation of Article 1 of the BWC.

We also obtained evidence that two biological laboratories in Mariupol were working with the Pentagon. The preliminary review of the remaining documents showed that Mariupol served as a regional hub for collecting and classifying cholera agents. The selected strains were then transferred to the Public Health Centre in Kiev, which then forwarded these biological samples to the United States. Carried out since 2014, this activity is evidenced by statements confirming the transfer of the strains. Why did it start in 2014? The reason lies in the anti-constitutional coup. It upended Ukraine’s independence in making decisions, and overseeing and analysing activities of this kind. People from the United States, Canada and other NATO countries flocked to Ukraine to take charge of the main domestic, foreign policy and economic activity and everything related to defence, military and strategic affairs, etc.

A statement was discovered in a sanitary and epidemiological laboratory. Dated February 25, 2022, it provides for the disposal of a collection of pathogenic microorganisms, demonstrating that the facility worked with cholera, tularemia, and anthrax agents.

In the rush to dispose of the inventory, part of it remained in this veterinary laboratory. The fact that it contained agents that are not typically found in livestock, such as typhoid, paratyphoid, and gas gangrene, is quite perplexing. This could mean that this laboratory, too, took part in the biological weapons programme.

We have every reason to assert that the DTRA focused its operations in Ukraine on collecting strains of dangerous microorganisms and exporting them to the United States, as well as studying naturally occurring agents in this region, which can be transmitted to people, with the aim of potentially using them in biological weapons. In 2020, two mobile laboratories arrived in Donbass in order to collect biological samples from the local population, primarily in the country’s eastern regions, and study them. Black and Veatch acted as DTRA’s contractor in this project.

It was with DTRA’s support that the laboratories in Kiev, Kharkov and Odessa in Ukraine took part in the UP-4 project before 2020 to study the transmission of especially dangerous infections (highly pathogenic influenza A H5N1, which has a mortality rate of over 50 percent for humans, as well as the Newcastle Disease, which affects poultry) by wild birds migrating between Ukraine, Russia and other Eastern European countries.

In addition, the documents we obtained show that the United States planned to work on bird, bat and reptile pathogens in Ukraine this year, followed by a study of whether they could transmit the African swine fever and anthrax (P-781, UP-2, UP-9, UP-10 projects). This was a system-wide research effort carried out since at least 2009 and controlled directly by US specialists as part of projects P-382, P-444 and P-568. DTRA’s office head at the US embassy in Kiev was among those overseeing this activity.

One of the goals of the UP-2 project consisted of locating places where animal carcasses had been buried and collecting soil samples from burial sites of cattle infected with anthrax. The epidemiological situation in Ukraine as far as anthrax was concerned was quite positive, which begs the question: What was the Pentagon actually looking for? I would like to remind all geography buffs out there in NATO (we saw incredible people who thought that the Baltic and the Black seas form one big lake) that the United States does not share a border with Ukraine. Even if they want to find one, it is still not there. Attempts by the Pentagon to present this as a national security concern are groundless and do not hold water. But what was the Pentagon doing in the Ukrainian biological laboratories in the first place? The fact that the US military biologists were so keen to study disease-transmitting insects near cattle burial sites was not a coincidence, since during the 2016 anthrax outbreak in Russia there were cases where flies, including horseflies, transmitted the disease.

In addition, the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation discovered three drones, equipped with 30-litre containers and sprays, in the Kherson Region on March 9, 2022. In late April 2022, they discovered 10 more devices of this kind near Kakhovka, after Russia released documents demonstrating Ukraine’s attempts to obtain drones equipped with sprays from the maker of the Bayraktars.

More than 4,000 people took part in studies under project UP-8. According to the Bulgarian media, some 20 Ukrainian soldiers died and 200 were hospitalised in the Kharkov laboratory alone during the experiments. The United States cannot carry out this activity on its own territory, so its military carry it out abroad. Where? Where they can, where there are no laws, where there is nobody to implement or enforce the law. This happened to be Ukraine.

It is an established fact that potentially dangerous biological agents were tested on the most vulnerable social group – patients at Kharkov’s regional psychiatric hospital No. 3. We have evidence describing in detail the Pentagon’s inhuman experiments with Ukrainian citizens at psychiatric hospital No. 1 (Strelechye, Kharkov Region).

The research results on the spread of dangerous deadly diseases like cholera, smallpox, anthrax, and botulinum toxins, were sent to military biological centres in the United States. These include the US Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases, Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Naval Medical Research Centre, as well as US Army Biological Warfare Laboratories at Fort Detrick, which used to be the key facilities in the US biological weapons programme. The US virologists focused on analysing the obtained samples to identify gene mutations in the agents and assess their virulence, pathogenic power and resistance to treatment.

Incidentally, about 2,000 blood serum samples taken from Ukrainian citizens of predominantly Slavic ethnic background have been sent to the United States, the United Kingdom and Germany. More than 140 containers with bat ectoparasites such as fleas and ticks have been transferred to Germany.

The programmes were financed either directly under DTRA contracts with private American companies (mainly СН2М Hill) as part of the Defence Department’s project to counter especially dangerous pathogens in Ukraine until 2024, or through the Science and Technology Centre in Ukraine. Overall, more than $1.5 billion has been allocated for the implementation of bioprojects over the past 10 years. In particular, the Rosemont Seneca investment fund with financial resources of at least $2.4 billion has been involved in financing this activity. At the same time, it has been found to be closely linked with the main Pentagon contractors, including Metabiota, which, along with Black and Veatch, is the main equipment supplier for Pentagon’s biolabs across the world.

According to reports, DTRA informed the Pentagon in early March that the facilities in Ukraine used by US biological research programmes were a growing danger for European countries due to the hostilities on Ukrainian territory.

Worse still, the experiments with dangerous and highly dangerous pathogens carried out in Ukraine in the interests of the Pentagon had long been attracting attention from Ukrainian nationalist groups. In case of a military defeat, the nationalists could use those materials to implement the so-called scorched earth tactic, which was an additional threat.

Furthermore, during the special military operation, Russia obtained materials that evidenced the deliberate use, in 2020, of a multidrug-resistant tuberculosis pathogen to infect the population, including minors, in the Slavyanoserbsky District of the LPR by distributing flyers that looked like counterfeit banknotes. According to the Lugansk Republican Sanitary and Epidemiological Station report, “… the banknotes have most likely been infected artificially because the sample contains extremely dangerous strains in a concentration that can ensure infection and the development of the tuberculosis process.” The chief physician of the Lugansk Republican TB Prevention Centre has confirmed in a letter that “there are all signs of deliberate, man-made contamination of flyers with highly pathogenic biomaterial.” Do you know what they are testing the Ukrainians’ samples for in the EU? Tuberculosis. Why? Because they know what NATO agencies have been doing there.

DTRA has proposed to the Pentagon chiefs to take additional measures to monitor the epidemiological situation in Ukraine and neighbouring European countries. In case of any infection outbreaks, the recommendation is to immediately accuse the Russian Armed Forces of “attacking research and medical institutions,” or blame “Russian sabotage groups.” They have already established the necessary communication channels with the Pentagon’s partners in Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovakia.

According to available information, DTRA demanded that the Ukrainian ministries of defence and health ensure the guaranteed destruction of all remaining materials from the bio-research projects in Ukraine. The people who are now in the EU countries, many of them suffering from tuberculosis, are not victims of airstrikes on Ukrainian research centres used by the Pentagon. They weren’t subjected to any of that. They are just carriers. Because the United States has been carrying out that activity on the territory of the country where they lived. DTRA was afraid the international community would interpret the information about the results of their experiments as a violation of the BTWC by the United States. Most of the documents have been removed from the labs in Kiev, Odessa and Kharkov to the Research Institute of Epidemiology and Hygiene and American diplomatic institutions in Lvov.

The materials obtained by the Russian Federation suggest an unambiguous conclusion that private American companies affiliated with the Pentagon had been supporting the development of bioweapons in labs on the territory of Ukraine in the immediate vicinity of Russia. The urgent destruction of especially dangerous pathogens was required to prevent the discovery of violations of Articles 1 and 4 of the BTWC. This has confirmed the validity of Russia’s repeated claims, in the context of the implementation of the BTWC, about the biological warfare activities the United States and its allies have been conducting in post-Soviet countries.

We are preparing to invoke the mechanisms of Articles 5 and 6 of the BTWC, according to which the states parties must consult one another and cooperate in solving any problems that may arise in relation to the purpose of the Convention or the implementation of its provisions, as well as cooperate in any investigation of possible violations of BTWC obligations.

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Closing Canada’s CBC bureau in Moscow 

With deep regret we continue to note blatant attacks on Russian media in the countries of the “collective West.” They call themselves civilised, developed democracies. Among recent examples is Canada’s ban on the Russian television channels RT and RT France. We said that we would respond. The response would be symmetrical, similar, proportional, it does not matter. But it would be adequate.

We have repeatedly warned that such unilateral restrictive measures that defy the principles of freedom of speech and hinder the work of the Russian media will not be left unanswered. Everybody must realise that our response is inevitable and will happen following any such incident.

In this regard, a decision has been made to respond to Canada’s actions, namely, to close the Moscow bureau of CBC, the Canadian state television of radio broadcasting corporation, including cancelling the accreditations and Russian visas of its journalists.

Unfortunately, it is blatantly clear that the official Ottawa is pursuing an openly Russophobic course. It is understandable. Who had been steering the country’s foreign policy for many years? A person with roots going back to mid-20th century collaborationism. It is clear why they turn a blind eye to neo-Nazism in Ukraine: they were the ones who encouraged it. In addition to direct political, military and financial support of the Kiev regime, the attacks on dissenting views and media censorship have been part of their Russophobic course. Any alternate point of view is always dubbed the Kremlin’s disinformation.

Ottawa’s anti-Russia policy is reflected in the most negative way in the actions of Canada’s state television and radio. In fact, CBC has transformed into the voice of propaganda that distributes fake news and questionable information regarding Russia, consigning journalist ethnics and even elementary rules of decorum to oblivion. We would have put up with that. We did for many years; we ignored or disavowed fake information, disclosed and refuted it. But there have been actual restrictions against Russian media. So, we respond in kind.

Once again, we emphasise that Moscow’s retaliation measures towards the hostile actions of the Trudeau’s government are not aimed against the people of Canada, who our country traditionally respects. The problem is with Canada’s ruling elite and the media that serve it. They are deliberately destroying Russia-Canada relations to the detriment of its own national interests.

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Situation at the JCPOA reactivation talks

Despite a certain lull at the talks in Vienna, the countries, parties to the nuclear deal, as well as US representatives, continue to exert vigorous efforts, while searching for the most effective and mutually acceptable way of resuming the full-fledged implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) under its initial parameters. All the concerned parties realise that there is no alternative to the nuclear deal.

The parties to the negotiating process continue to maintain their contacts. Enrique Mora, Deputy Secretary-General of the European External Action Service and Coordinator of the Joint Commission of the JCPOA, visited Tehran last week. European and Iranian colleagues positively assess the meetings that took place during this visit, and note incipient progress. This instils a certain hope that we have taken one more step towards our main goal, namely ensuring the full-fledged reactivation of the JCPOA.

In turn, we intend to continue doing everything possible to ensure the positive outcome of the talks in Vienna, which require wholehearted efforts from all the participants, including Iran, the United States and European countries. This is our firm and objective position. We are urging all healthy forces to use their energy to preserve the JCPOA and restore the calibrated balance of interests on which it hinges.

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The situation in the Republic of Moldova

We have noted a number of events in Moldova that are a cause for concern.

On May 11, 2022, Moldova’s TV-8 television channel broadcast a Skype interview with Leonid Volkov, a member of the Russian opposition. He is a person of interest in criminal cases that have been opened in Russia, and arrest warrants have been issued for him in CIS member states under the Agreement on Interstate Search for People of December 10, 2010, of which the Republic of Moldova is a party. At the same time, the country stipulates tough broadcasting restrictions for Russian media outlets, claiming “unbalanced” information content provision. Has Moldova banned CNN or BBC broadcasts? Has it banned the websites of the New York Times, the Washington Post and the Financial Times? Or do they provide completely balanced information content?

On May 13, 2022, the Moldova Post said it was temporarily suspending the delivery of all letters and parcels to the Russian Federation, citing “technical reasons.” Over 220,000 Russian citizens now live in Moldova, and Moldovan diaspora in Russia has more than 200,000 members. The Moldova Post’s decision infringes upon the right of Russian and Moldovan residents to maintain business, cultural, humanitarian and personal contacts.

The above-mentioned actions of official Chisinau, as well as some of its other actions and statements, make one doubt that the country’s leadership is really committed to the Republic’s neutral status, to honouring the rights and interests of its residents, as well as to maintaining pragmatic and mutually beneficial partnership with Russia.  I know that Chisinau reacts sensitively to our statements, but we are no less sensitive to their actions.

Although the Moldovan authorities did not announce this, various national agencies are applying Western anti-Russian sanctions in the banking sphere and during the re-export of Russian goods. With the connivance of the Moldovan authorities, protesters have been staging daily anti-Russia rallies near the Russian Embassy in Chisinau for almost 60 days, and these rallies hamper the normal work of the diplomatic mission. A recent outrageous ban on using St George ribbons in the Republic caused a public outcry in Russia and Moldova.

We are once again urging the Moldovan party to refrain from actions that are detrimental to relations with Russia and not to follow in the wake of forces striving to involve the Republic of Moldova in the anti-Russia campaign. This negatively affects the citizens of our countries, in particular.

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Russia’s stance on Cyprus settlement

Once again, we are seeing certain media outlets spreading rumours that Russia is changing its principled stance on the Cyprus settlement. These provocative rumours have nothing to do with reality and pursue just one goal: to discredit our country and its foreign policy.

We have never questioned the principles of the peaceful solution to the Cyprus issue. We continue to consistently support a solution in line with international law and UN Security Council resolutions, which provide for creating a bicommunal bizonal federation with common international identity, sovereignty and citizenship.

Once again, our approach to the situation in Cyprus is widely known and remains unchanged concerning all aspects, including the UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFYCIP), which plays an exceptionally important stabilising role in the current environment of uncertainty. We believe it is important to continue the operation of UNFYCIP as it was important to appoint a UN Secretary-General Special Representative in charge of the settlement that reports to the UN Security Council.

I would like to note for Cypriot media that we are always ready to comment on any leaks they may get to prevent misinformation on their pages.

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Growing terrorist activity in Burkina Faso and neighbouring countries

We are concerned about significantly intensified extremist activity in Burkina Faso and increasingly frequent cases of the extremists crossing over to the neighbouring countries.

In particular, on May 14‒16, 2022, a series of attacks on gendarmerie posts and self-defence groups, as well as attacks on a column of civilians near the border with Benin took place in the northern and eastern regions of Burkina Faso. The attacks resulted in more than 40 victims, including among civilians.

Earlier, in the early hours of May 11, 2011, as a result of a large-scale attack from the northern territory of Burkina Faso targeting an advance outpost of the Togolese armed forces, eight members of the military were killed and 13 sustained injuries of different severity levels. This was the first terrorist attack with casualties in the history of the state.

We strongly condemn these crimes and extend our condolences to the loved ones of those killed and wish speedy recovery to the injured.

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Desecration of Soviet military graves in Gdansk

We were outraged by an act of vandalism committed on May 11, 2022, in Gdansk, where perpetrators tore out and damaged 20 stars on the memorials to Soviet liberators on the graves of the Red Army soldiers killed while liberating the city.

The nature of this heinous act is absolutely clear: insulting the memory of the dead is now an integral part of Polish political provocateurs’ arsenal. This latest incident is not a random occasion but part of a deliberate campaign pursued by official Warsaw to disparage everything that is sacred for the people of Russia and those who fought against the brown plague.

Sadly, regular reports on criminal and immoral acts against the Soviet military legacy in Poland have long become ordinary news indicating that Polish officials have unleashed a Russophobic campaign. Recently, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki publicly confessed to his hatred of everything Russian thus revealing the nature of Warsaw’s policy against our country. Or is it just his personal opinion?

We can confidently say that Warsaw, neglecting all moral and international legal norms, has embarked on a course of state-supported vandalism against the memory of Soviet soldiers who gave their lives to save Poland from extermination by Nazis.

We want to remind any frenzied Russophobes that all their barbaric acts and dirty pillaging will not destroy the truth about the Victory. We will not allow it.

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Desecrating a memorial to Generalissimo Alexander Suvorov’s comrades who died when crossing the Alps in 1799, in the Shollenen Gorge (Switzerland)

On May 15, 2022, unidentified individuals desecrated the memorial to Generalissimo Alexander Suvorov’s comrades who died while crossing the Alps in 1799, in the Shollenen Gorge in Switzerland. The memorial cross and inscription were splashed with paint. What did Suvorov do to offend them?

We are deeply outraged by this horrendous act of vandalism. The incident demonstrates the level of culture in Switzerland. It has nothing to do with us. It has everything to do with you and those who stand behind this kind of campaigns, condone them and fail to search for or covers for the perpetrators.

We sent a protest note to the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs of the Swiss Confederation demanding that it takes urgent measures to rectify the damage caused, find and prosecute the guilty and ensure proper security of the memorial.

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13th International Economic Summit Russia – Islamic World: KazanSummit 2022

On May 19‒21, 2022, the 13th International Economic Summit Russia – Islamic World: KazanSummit 2022 will take place in Kazan. The event is held under the aegis of the Russia – Islamic World Strategic Vision Group, chaired by President of the Republic of Tatarstan Rustam Minnikhanov.

KazanSummit is a well-established platform for presenting the Russian Federation’s economic opportunities and investment potential to its partners from Islamic countries. It serves as a modern dialogue platform for building new connections between representatives of international organisations, financial institutions and government bodies, embassies, and the senior managers of major Russian and foreign companies. Several events are scheduled on the sidelines of this year’s summit, including Russia Halal Expo 2022, the Machine Engineering Cluster Forum, World Halal Day and festivities marking the 1,100th anniversary of Volga Bulgaria’s adoption of Islam.

Deputy Foreign Minister and Special Presidential Representative for the Middle East Mikhail Bodganov and Ambassador-at-Large Konstantin Shuvalov will take part on behalf of the Russian Foreign Ministry.

The 6th OIC Young Diplomats’ Forum (hereinafter the “forum”) will also take place during the summit, to be attended by representatives of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s Council of Young Diplomats, as well as invited guests and experts.

The forum will focus on issues of indivisible security, prospects for cooperation with OIC countries, countering new challenges and threats, and the role of young diplomats from the Islamic world in forming a major foreign political agenda. The International Association of Young Diplomats will hold its first induction ceremony.

The forum has been held since 2015, with more than 160 representatives of the OIC foreign ministries and agencies attending over the years. The forum is organised by the Russian Foreign Ministry’s Council of Young Diplomats, the Government of the Republic of Tatarstan and the Academy of Youth Diplomacy public organisation.

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2nd Kostomarov Forum

One of our country’s priorities on the foreign humanitarian track is supporting and promoting the Russian language abroad. The Kostomarov Forum, organised by the Alexander Pushkin State Institute of the Russian Language, significantly contributes to developing international cooperation in this area.

This year, the forum will be held on May 24‒25 and will focus on the role of the Russian language and its functioning in the new conditions created by the information revolution and technological breakthrough of recent decades.

The forum programme includes a presentation of the Pushkin Institute’s research paper, 2021 Russian Language World Index, a panel discussion on preparations for the Year of the Russian Language as a Language of Interethnic Communication Across the CIS, to be held in 2023. The Cyril and Methodius Readings research and practice conference will comprise 30 sessions on sharing experience in linguistics, literature studies, teaching Russian as a foreign language, and social sciences and humanities. A roundtable meeting on the history and modern issues concerning the Cyrillic alphabet will be held. The detailed programme is available on the forum’s website.

Russian and foreign scholars, teachers, literature researchers and journalists, as well as representatives of government bodies, professional and public associations and business organisations are expected to attend.

The forum’s working language is Russian. The event will be held in the hybrid format. Sessions will also be streamed online on its website.

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Eurasian Economic Forum in Bishkek

On May 26, Bishkek will host the Eurasian Economic Forum. Its topic will be ‘Eurasian economic integration at the time of global change. New investment opportunities.’

We expect the forum to serve as a networking platform where businesses, government agencies, academia and experts can discuss the key matters on the development agenda of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), promoting entrepreneurship across its space and green energy, as well as strengthening region-to-region ties and cooperation.

The forum’s main programme includes six panel discussions covering the strategic prospects for Eurasian integration, ensuring economic stability for EAEU member states, manufacturing, agriculture, energy, and transport infrastructure, the digital agenda, as well as new areas of cooperation for the EAEU.

You can register for the forum and explore its programme on its website. You can also follow its online stream.

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Answers to media questions:

Question: Russia withdrew from the Baltic Sea Parliamentary Conference, citing the lack of dialogue. What is your assessment of the diplomatic contacts in this region?

Maria Zakharova: Let me draw your attention to the statement that we made yesterday announcing Russia’s withdrawal from the Council of the Baltic Sea States.

The situation within the Council of the Baltic Sea States (CBSS) has been deteriorating. NATO and EU countries within CBSS rejected equal dialogue and the principles that lie at the very foundation of this regional structure in the Baltic, consistently striving to turn it into a tool of their anti-Russia policy. Illegal and discriminatory decisions have been made in violation of the consensus rule. Russia has been suspended from further participation in the Council’s activities and projects, and Belarus, which has an observer status within the Council, was also suspended.

The CBSS has been riddled with contradictions for a long time now, and we pointed out many of them. You can find this in our briefings, statements and comments. Our former partners sought to politicise the Council’s activity by promoting their own ideology-driven agenda. Russia, in turn, focused on practical cooperation, prioritising stable socioeconomic development for the Baltic region. Unfortunately, the destructive logic of the other side prevailed.

The Western countries – to call them what they are – monopolised the Council for the sake of their momentary interests and they want to make it work against Russia’s interests. They project extra-regional issues onto the Baltic, pressure those who are interested in continuing full and unabridged cooperation, threatening to undermine everything that has been achieved over the past years, as well as regional stability. On May 25, 2022, Kristiansand, Norway, is expected to host the CBSS Ministerial Session without Russia. They de facto stole our contribution to the CBSS budget and refuse to return it, citing sanctions.

We don’t see any prospects for putting the Council back on track. Instead, it is sinking deeper and deeper into Russophobia and lies. We believe staying in the CBSS would be unreasonable and counterproductive for our country. Russia will not participate in turning this organisation into yet another platform for subversion and Western self-admiration.

In response to these hostile acts, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov sent a message to CBSS ministers, the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, as well as the Council’s Secretariat in Stockholm to notify them of Russia’s withdrawal from this organisation. At the same time, the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation took the decision to leave the Baltic Sea Parliamentary Conference.

Ending Russia’s CBSS membership will not affect its regional presence. Attempts to expel our country from the Baltic are doomed to failure. We will continue working with responsible partners and hold events on the key issues on the development agenda of the Baltic region that we all share, as well as to defend and promote the interests of our compatriots.

The current situation within the CBSS rests on the conscience of those who undermined the very foundations of this organisation.

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Question: The United States, the EU and UN have stated they are willing to assist in the removal of grain from Ukraine. Have they discussed these initiatives with Russia?

Maria Zakharova: The EU member states were seriously concerned over the rapid rise in the prices of grain, fodder and fertilisers, let alone energy prices, even before the current crisis, as well as the unprofitability of private farming and fishing. All of this was put in black and white. The EU summit held in late March passed the decision on the need to guarantee, under the existing circumstances, the affordability of food in the EU member countries.  A few weeks later, the European Commission came up with a detailed initiative to this effect (I spoke about it earlier today).

We urge the international community not to succumb to provocations. I have no information confirming that the initiatives I have mentioned were in any manner discussed with Russia.

Question: What can you say about the murder of Al Jazeera’s Shireen Abu Akleh?

Maria Zakharova: This tragedy has stirred up the entire Arab world. Few people remain indifferent to it. The Palestinian journalist was killed in the line of duty as she was selflessly covering an Israeli raid on the refugee camp in Jenin on the West Bank.

Yesterday, while meeting in Moscow with Secretary of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO), member of the Fatah Central Committee and Head of the General Authority for Civil Affairs Hussein al-Sheikh, Sergey Lavrov expressed condolences on the death of Shireen Abu Akleh and voiced his support of the Palestinian demand to hold an unbiased investigation into her death.

We should focus separately on the outrage that occurred during her funeral, when the military assaulted the people carrying the body and accompanying the funeral procession. I can tell you honestly that I have never seen anything like that.

As for a response to what was going on at the funeral from related international institutions… Were they there?

I would like to note that the lack of progress in the settlement of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict and the stalemate in the negotiating process repeatedly explode into fierce standoffs that leave in their wake numerous victims among peaceful civilians, including women and children. These tragedies could be avoided by achieving mutually acceptable compromises regarding the final status via a direct dialogue based on the generally recognised international legal framework of Middle East settlement that provides for the creation of an independent Palestinian state. The Russian leaders have repeatedly spoken about this.

Question: How will the Russian Foreign Ministry respond to the Lithuanian Foreign Minister’s call for a regime change in Russia? 

Maria Zakharova: This is an attempt to interfere in Russia’s internal affairs and destroy what remains of our bilateral relations. He is trying to curry favour with his overseas masters.

Mr Landsbergis, who lives in a state that tramples underfoot the basic human rights and freedoms, has clearly forgotten that the Russian President is elected by the people. This has nothing to do with his personal views or his country’s position. But the pathological hatred that he feels for Russia is blurring his vision and depriving him of the last of his reason. Consequently, he can’t see the obvious. This is Russophobia, pure and simple.

Let us take a look at the people who make these statements. We always comment only on statements. But who makes them? They are made by people who have Russophobia in their blood. It is inherited as a specific “legacy” or, possibly, a genetic trait.

I have a lot to say about the Landsbergis regime. They are a dynasty. Let me give you just a few widely available facts. You will understand who I am talking about. All materials are from open sources. They are also available in the archives.

Suffice it to recall the great-grandfather of the current Lithuanian foreign minister, Vytautas Landsbergis-Zemkalnis, who in 1941was the utilities minister in the Ambrazevicius-Brazaitis Government that collaborated with the Nazis. Landsbergis was directly involved in the effort to create concentration camps all over Lithuania, including in Kaunas. He was the Landsbergises regime’s great-grandfather. It was there, at Fort Nine, that on October 29, 1941, the Nazis committed a heinous crime, executing 9,200 Jews, including 4,273 children.

Landsbergis-Zemkalnis also collaborated with Gestapo, the German secret police. After the war, he fled to Australia (which also does not notice neo-Nazism in today’s Ukraine, but has introduced all sorts of sanctions against Russian citizens) but was granted the right to return to the Lithuanian Soviet Socialist Republic in 1959 after he contributed information about other Nazi fugitives to the Soviet security bodies.

The foreign minister’s grandfather, Professor of the Vilnius Philharmonic Society Vytautas Landsbergis, continued the family tradition of conformism and change of political position. He actively collaborated with the USSR secret services: at their recommendation he was appointed the leader of the movement of the Lithuanian intellectuals in support of the perestroika (Sajudis). At his will, it later transformed into a separatist movement for the withdrawal of Lithuania from the USSR. So much for the family.

Vytautas Petkevicius, Landsbergis’s colleague at the Sajudis action group, wrote the following about this grey eminence of Lithuanian politics: “From the very first days, Landsbergis sought to turn the organisation into his pocket political party, with membership, party cards and membership fees.”  In all evidence, he was motivated by his knowledge of the best totalitarian practices. Later he started mixing up Sajudis money with his own. This was something in the liberal economy genre. Still later, contributions from compatriots became this gentleman’s personal money box, a source of payments to his allies, extras for participating in rallies, and funds for foreign travel. The same pocket ate up one million dollars collected by Canadians for Lithuanian orphans and a Norwegian donation to the Lithuanian people. But Landsbergis again managed to get himself out of the mess, declaring that he had created a fund bearing his name.

Autocracy pales in comparison with the Baltic democracies and their representatives. If you only knew how Baltic officials start cringing when you come to citing facts from their biographies or those of their relatives who have directly influenced their civil service promotion or career advancement.  Do you know how much they dislike it? But why are you so embarrassed about it? These are the facts of your biography, and you should be proud of them. We didn’t invent anything. We have just facts and quotes. And you have disproved nothing. So, take it and sign for it.

Question: Could you comment on the Ukrainian authorities’ recent decision to nationalise the property of Russia’s banks VEB and Sberbank?

Maria Zakharova: The Kiev regime stopped caring about the norms and principles of international law and the Ukrainian Constitution long ago, both with regard to its own citizens and those of other states. It is hardly surprising that, on May 12, 2022, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine approved the executive order of President Vladimir Zelensky on the so-called enforced confiscation of Russian property in the country. In effect, this amounts to a brazen theft of assets owned by subsidiaries of Russia’s Sberbank and the State Development Corporation of Russia VEB.RF located in Ukraine. These assets are worth $860 million. This is a continuation of the same logic. However, no one in Kiev has any misgivings about the fact that the nationalised subsidiary banks also manage the money of Ukrainian citizens and legal entities, and that the Ukrainian authorities are simply robbing them.

This unconstitutional escapade of the Kiev regime replicates the worst actions of this kind by Washington, Brussels and London. Let them call it whatever they like. In reality, this is banal theft.

Question: The President of Finland described Vladimir Putin’s response to his country joining NATO as surprisingly calm. How does this calm Russian response tally with the Deputy Foreign Minister’s statement that Russia will not simply reconcile itself to the accession of Finland and Sweden to NATO?

Maria Zakharova: This was how the Finnish party perceived reality. You should ask them why they got this impression and whether it was correct. This is their perception. Let’s not confuse things. Everyone has a right to perceive things the way he or she sees fit.

The Russian party has set forth its position regarding the accession of Finland and Sweden to NATO. We have published our arguments and statements.

Every state has a sovereign right to choose specific options to ensure its national security. However, no one should ensure its own security at the expense of other countries’ security.

The Russian Federation will respond, and the content of its countermeasures, including military-technical elements, will largely depend on specific NATO membership terms for Finland and Sweden, including the deployment of foreign military bases and strike weapons systems on their territory. Our response will feature less words and more actual steps.

Question: An 18-year-old neo-Nazi who shot at a crowd in the United States sported the insignia of the Azov battalion. Can you comment on this coincidence?

Maria Zakharova: This is not the first mass shooting based on such hatred. It goes without saying that a comprehensive investigation should be conducted, including confirmation of the fact that the shooter used Nazi symbols, the so-called “black sun.”  We saw the video and think that an investigation must be held. This is important because a lot of unverified information is now circulating. Let’s be guided by the facts.

However, the very atmosphere of a deep public fissure in American society, as well as neglected problems of racism and institutionalised violence, due to free access to weapons, generate new manifestations of crime that are horrendous in terms of their scale and the ways they are carried out.

Regarding the link with Nazi symbols and Azov, which you have mentioned, this amounts to the flirtation of the US administration and its security services with neo-Nazis all over the world, with obvious consequences. They forget that all this will also spill over into the United States. In fact, this has already been happening for a long time. If they see nothing unusual in the fact that neo-Nazi ideas are spreading in “client” countries, then why should they be surprised that such symbols are actively used in various US states? The problem lies elsewhere. This isn’t just about symbols, it is about a revival. Many do not grasp the gist of this. We are talking about the actions that these symbols provoke. They explain a person’s planned future actions, and they are like a warning danger sign or a semaphore.  Many perceive this as an endorsement of such symbols and the related actions in the United States. This flirtation, which we have mentioned, leads to such tragic results.

Question: Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at the 30th Assembly of the Council on Foreign and Defence Policy that “in the current environment, we are witnessing a serious shift in the mindsets of many of our comrades in all spheres of Russia’s life.” What effect is this having on the staff of the ministry’s central office, the embassies and consulates general?

Maria Zakharova: Like the rest of the country, we have rallied even closer together. Awareness of the historical shift underway in the world, which is life-changing for Russia, has given a fresh impetus to the resolve of our personnel to do their professional duties even more professionally and diligently.

Crises can catch you unawares, when you can’t think straight, feel at a loss and lose heart, or it can give you more inspiration. The latter is our case. We have rallied together and joined forces and efforts to attain the goals set for us by the nation.

The completely unprovoked outbreak of Russophobia in the West, the illegal trade and economic restrictions and the desire to demonise everything Russian have reinforced the belief of our staff and their families that truth, justice and moral probity are on the side of Russia and its people. They have found themselves at the forefront of the political stage, that’s for sure. You can’t imagine the situation they’re living in now and the actions that are being taken against them, from provocations and threats to open violence, psychological pressure and the creating of conditions that those behind these things believe will make their work impossible. We are proud of our people!

They have shown remarkable personality traits, such as comradeship and professionalism. I am referring both to our rank-and-file employees and to the senior officials in our foreign offices, as Sergey Lavrov pointed out.

We are reshuffling our personnel. Those who are returning home will be offered new positions. The relevant departments are regularly reporting on this to the minister.

As for foreign policy guidelines, we have redoubled efforts to strengthen our diplomacy on the eastern track and in Africa, Latin America and the CIS. The results will not be long in coming.

Question: Dmitry Birichevsky, director of the Department of Economic Cooperation at the ministry, noted recently that the EU’s decision to suspend Russian oil and gas imports would have an extremely negative effect on the European and global economies. What effect will this embargo have on Russia? What countermeasures can your ministry take?

Maria Zakharova: The physical volume of Russian hydrocarbon exports has decreased amid the foreign sanctions pressure. However, we believe that our export revenues will at least not decrease, due to rapidly rising oil and gas prices. The so-called embargo, which the EU is now considering, could send oil prices soaring.

Our obvious logical response in this event would be to reorient our oil and gas exports.  This is not an easy task. It will involve changing logistics routes, as well as legal and business matters. Russia is already reorienting its coal, oil and gas export infrastructure towards the East. It is worth noting that energy needs around the world, and especially in the Asia Pacific region, will be growing. We have no doubt about demand for Russian energy resources. The Foreign Ministry is helping Russian companies find counterparties, including in Asia Pacific.

Question: Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov has pointed out that joining NATO will not strengthen the security of Sweden and Finland. As for economic ties, Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin has made several other unfriendly moves towards Russia, notably regarding the nuclear power plant project with Rosatom. Maybe a picture of possible economic losses should be provided to Helsinki?

Maria Zakharova: Finland is aware of its economic losses because of the European sanctions and our response measures. We regard the decision taken by Finland’s Fennovoima to stop cooperating with Rosatom companies within the framework of the agreement on the construction of the Hanhikivi 1 Nuclear Power Plant as openly politicised. It is obvious that the decision to stop that commercial project was forced on the client by the Finnish authorities, who were pressured by their foreign partners. It is not a coincidence that the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, which is responsible for energy matters, hastily welcomed that decision, which it described as “principled and consistent.” We know very well where such instructions are issued.

Rosatom State Corporation put forth its position on that matter in a May 2 statement. It expressed disappointment at the decision of Fennovoima Oy, which was taken without any detailed consultation with the project’s shareholders, the largest of which is RAOS Voima, which has a 34 percent stake in the project. Rosatom concluded that it reserved the right to defend its interests in accordance with applicable contracts and laws.

Question: Can you provide any information about those who left Azovstal? We know of discussions on a possible exchange on the Ukrainian side. Is there any discussion underway in Russia? We heard that Russian lawmakers are considering reinstating the death penalty for these people. What is the real situation?

Maria Zakharova: This is the competence of the Russian Ministry of Defence. At the same time, we would like to note that all the wounded and seriously injured people and anyone who needs medical assistance has been receiving it. They are in the Novoazovsk hospital in the DPR. The rest have been placed in a pre-trial detention centre in Yelenovka, a suburb of Donetsk.

As for other issues, they will be resolved in due course. At this stage, the most important issue is the safe exit of everyone from Azovstal, and providing them with medical care, other necessary humanitarian assistance and accommodation.

As for other questions, we will certainly provide regular updates.

Question: Is an exchange being discussed?

Maria Zakharova: At this stage, the information I shared is all I have. I have nothing to add.

Our priority, the one we have been stating for three weeks, was their exit from Azovstal. We have persuaded people to come out every day, and made several announcements of humanitarian corridors for everyone including civilians, militants and military personnel of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. Only now has the Kiev regime allowed them to do so. At the moment, our priorities are their safe exit and the provision of assistance to them. This problem needs to be solved, and it is being solved now.

Question: What happens to those civilians who came out through the humanitarian corridors, but were stopped by the “filtering” procedure? Where are they being held? Will they be entitled to due legal procedure? What are the conditions of where they are kept?

Maria Zakharova: You mean the people who came out – when? Today? Who are exiting now? Those who needed medical assistance are receiving it, or have received it by now. I can check where the rest went, because this matter is the competence of the Russian Ministry of Defence. I promise to find this information. I’ll check and get back to you.

Question: Why does Russia consider Ukraine’s NATO membership and its cooperation with NATO such a big threat, while, according to Sergey Lavrov, Finland’s NATO membership does not have such great importance for Russia?

Maria Zakharova: I do not remember Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov saying it the way you quoted. Let me find the exact quote.

We have long insisted that any expansion of NATO has a bearing on, and significance in the context of global international and, in particular, European security. This was the security guarantees we demanded, because we have seen the alliance expand and reach our borders. You certainly understand the difference between the situations in Finland and Ukraine.

I don’t know, maybe you have some additional information about growing numbers of nationalist battalions in Finland, for example? Maybe dozens of Pentagon biological laboratories are deployed in Finland and experimenting with dangerous pathogens? I am unaware of any information about Finland being pumped full of the same types of weapons that have been supplied to Ukraine under contracts or without contracts to an area of an armed intra-Finnish conflict, but perhaps you know about it? I don’t know anything about it. This is just a brief overview of the differences between Finland and Ukraine in the last decade.

The developments in Ukraine followed a dramatic scenario due to blatant interference by Washington, with the anti-constitutional coup in Kiev being one of the strongest catalysts. Perhaps you have information on a similar revolution in Finland? I don’t know anything about it. This is why the two situations are different, in broad strokes.

The choice of ways to ensure national security is (this is our underlying approach) the sovereign right of each country, but at the same time, it should not be ensured at the expense of other states.

We have no other choice left but to take retaliatory measures. The specifics – including the military-technical aspect – will depend on the terms of Finland’s and Sweden’s NATO membership, including the deployment of foreign military bases and strike weapon systems on their territory.

As for the differences in our reactions to Finland joining NATO and Ukraine’s ambition to become a member of this military bloc, as the Russian side emphasised earlier, in particular, they stem from Kiev’s decision to include in its doctrinal documents its intention to return Crimea, a sovereign Russian territory, possibly by military means. Finland has no territorial claims to the Russian Federation. There are no documents where it would say it could use any means to return any Russian territory. This is another argument to add to the previous ones.

Question: What kind of military-technical measures does Russia plan to apply to Finland, and what might their timeframe be?

Maria Zakharova: It will be a surprise. A question is for the Defence Ministry. The corresponding decision will factor in the full scope of details and specifics of how Finland’s membership in NATO will unfold. The decision will be made based on all these parameters, and primarily, it will be up to the military.

Question: Is there any discussion on exchanging Azovstal prisoners for the Russian, DPR or LPR soldiers being held captive? We would also like to know something about the fate of Artyom Ryabovichev and Daniil Romanov from a DPR tank brigade. Some Russian journalists wrote about them. According to their reports, they have been prisoners since May 1. Ukrainian militants were torturing them on camera and posting the videos online. Earlier, Ukraine refused to exchange them, saying it would negotiate only with Russia rather than with the DPR. Is the Foreign Ministry aware of the fate of Ryabovichev and Romanov and are there plans to put them on the exchange lists?

Maria Zakharova: Normally, we join in when there are diplomatic relations. After February 24, when Kiev broke off diplomatic relations with Russia and closed the Russian foreign missions in Ukraine, the Russian Foreign Ministry lost its channels for dealing with issues like this. Nevertheless, during the special military operation, these problems are being handled by the Defence Ministry of Russia and Human Rights Commissioner Tatyana Moskalkova. The Foreign Ministry constantly informs them of any case of a Russian citizens being detained in Ukraine. All this information is being consolidated.

We are able to raise these issues at international venues. We put these questions to Kiev’s Western sponsors, drawing their attention to the Ukrainian neo-Nazis’ cruel and inhuman treatment of detained Russian soldiers and of People’s Militia fighters from the DPR and LPR. We demand that the standards of international humanitarian law be rigorously observed with respect to these men. We urge related international organisations, including the International Committee of the Red Cross, to take exhaustive measures for their protection, specifically to gain access to them and honestly inform the international community about the results. We hope these efforts will help us find out more about the fate of these two DPR servicemen.

Question: Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov went on record as saying that Moscow has information indicating that Ukraine lacks independence at the talks and that it is “guided” by London and Washington. He also said that Russia had received no concrete proposals on Ukraine from the West. Does this mean that Moscow is losing interest in direct negotiations with Ukraine and wants the “collective West” to join the process?

Maria Zakharova: We showed an interest and displayed a lot of patience, an interest in all types of talks, for eight years. We came up with many possible scenarios on how these talks could be conducted. Currently, everything is being decided primarily on the ground.

When Ukraine showed an interest and signaled a desire to hold talks with Russia, we responded. But they started doing all they could to drag out the talks. When there was interest on the Ukrainian side, it was supported by Russia. At this point – the Russian Foreign Ministry and other agencies have commented on this – the Kiev regime is doing everything it can to prevent the talks from being held in a normal negotiating format.

The West has always been behind the Kiev regime, both the current and previous authorities. A “Western hand” has always guided the pen that was allegedly held by any representatives from Kiev. There is nothing new here, no breakthrough.

Question: How would you assess the work of the trilateral working group engaged in unblocking regional economic ties and communications, which is co-chaired by the deputy prime ministers of Armenia, Russia and Azerbaijan? What stage is the process at now and when can we expect obvious results?

Maria Zakharova: We have high regard for the work of the Trilateral Working Group (TWG). The foreign ministers of Armenia and Azerbaijan gave similar assessments during their meeting with Sergey Lavrov on the sidelines of the CIS Foreign Ministers Council meeting in Dushanbe on May 12.

We believe that the unblocking of all transport and economic connections in the South Caucasus is one of the key goals in the context of the effort to normalise Armenian-Azerbaijani relations and, more broadly, to harmonise cooperation in the region.

The TWG co-chairs have regular meetings designed to work out solutions that will suit all sides. Last week, the Russian co-chair, Deputy Prime Minister Alexey Overchuk, visited Yerevan for talks with Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan. Among other things, the officials discussed how to open communications in the region. The co-chairs inform the media of the specific results of the joint work on an individual basis.

Question: Are there any clear agreements between Armenia and Azerbaijan regarding a possible meeting of the Commission on Border Delimitation and Security, where Russia is expected to provide advisory support?

Maria Zakharova: We are consistently advocating the creation of a bilateral commission for the delimitation of the Armenian-Azerbaijani border, with its subsequent demarcation with Russia’s advisory assistance. Simultaneously, as the trilateral statement from the November 26, 2021 Sochi summit stipulates, steps are to be taken to increase stability and security on the border between the two countries.

This matter was discussed during the trilateral meeting of foreign ministers in Dushanbe. Our partners said they were close to completing the formation of their national delegations. Russia has already built an expert team. We hope that in the near future, we could launch practical work on the delimitation of the Armenian-Azerbaijani border.

We would like to emphasise that Russia has unique expert potential in border delimitation and settlement of border disputes between post-Soviet countries. We will be happy to share our experience and practices with our Armenian and Azerbaijani friends as part of the commission.

Question: The Azerbaijani side continues to violate the ceasefire on the border. On May 7, at around 1.50 pm, the Azerbaijani Armed Forces fired from different calibre firearms at the Sotk gold mine, injuring one of the mine employees. How would you comment on the Azerbaijani side’s actions against the civilian population?

Maria Zakharova: We are confident that the expeditious launch of the commission on the delimitation of the Armenian-Azerbaijani border would effectively prevent any further border incidents. The commission could contribute to developing confidence-building mechanisms, including, for example, by creating contact groups to ensure stability in the border areas.

Question: Recent photos of the Armenian Holy Resurrection Church in Hadrut, a province controlled by the Azerbaijani side, on social media show that its cross has been dismantled and the Armenian inscriptions erased. How would you assess the acts of vandalism against Armenian cultural and religious sites in Nagorno-Karabakh?

Maria Zakharova: I have no information on this score. As Russian representatives have repeatedly emphasised, we call on both parties to preserve the region’s cultural and historical heritage, involving specialised international agencies including UNESCO, if necessary.

Question: The situation in Afghanistan and border security was one of the main issues at the CSTO summit in Moscow. What measures are planned to ensure the security of member countries within the framework of this organisation?

Maria Zakharova: The situation in the CSTO area of responsibility and in the immediate vicinity of our borders makes us be as vigilant as possible and ready, if necessary, to respond timely and appropriately to emerging threats to the security of member nations. This is a task of the organisation.

Pursuant to the instructions given by the leaders at the CSTO Extraordinary Summit on August 23, 2021, CSTO member states prepared proposals for joint response measures to challenges and threats from the territory of Afghanistan. The Russian Federation has proposed a number of specific measures through its foreign policy departments, including:

– Strengthening foreign policy coordination to ensure a unified position of CSTO member states on the political settlement in Afghanistan. Involving representatives of the CIS and SCO secretariats in the meetings of the Working Group on Afghanistan under the CSTO Foreign Ministers Council;

– Intensifying contacts between the CSTO and the United Nations Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia;

– Stepping up cooperation between the competent agencies and special services of CSTO member states in detecting and neutralising extremist and terrorist cells in the countries of the Organisation;

– Taking a range of preventive measures as part of the unscheduled operations Nayomnik (Mercenary), PROXY and Nelegal (Illegal Alien);

– Focusing Kanal (Channel), a CSTO’s anti-drug operation, on suppressing drug trafficking along the “northern route”;

– Implementing joint measures to counter subversive propaganda by terrorist organisations in cyberspace on the basis of the CSTO’s 2016 List of Additional Measures to Counter International Terrorism and Extremism;

– Increasing cooperation between the CSTO and the UN Counter-Terrorism Committee.

All these measures are being consistently implemented and serve to strengthen the security of all member states of the Organisation, as well as to maintain stability in the region as a whole.

Question: How does the Russian Federation view the escalating tensions in the Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Region of Tajikistan?

Maria Zakharova: We are concerned by the information provided by the official authorities of Tajikistan on the escalation of tensions in the Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Region, which, according to reports, was provoked by criminal elements and extremist sympathisers, who joined them. As a result, there were victims and casualties, including among Tajik law enforcement officers.

The Russian Embassy in Dushanbe is in constant contact with the country’s competent authorities. According to preliminary information, there are no Russian citizens among the victims.

The Tajik authorities promise to take the necessary measures to stabilise the situation and ensure the safety of Russian citizens who may be present on the scene.

No Putin ‘apology’ to Israeli PM found in Kremlin transcript

Tel Aviv earlier claimed that President Putin apologized for the remarks of his foreign minister, in which he suggested Adolf Hitler may have had ‘Jewish blood’

May 06 2022

Russian President Vladimir Putin (R) speaks with Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett during their meeting, in Sochi, on October 22, 2021. (Photo by Yevgeny BIYATOV / Sputnik / AFP) (Photo by YEVGENY BIYATOV/Sputnik/AFP via Getty Images)

ByNews Desk

Moscow did not explicitly confirm or deny a claim made by Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett on 5 May, in which he said that Russian President Vladimir Putin apologized to him for the controversial comments made by the Kremlin’s top diplomat earlier this week.

Bennett claimed that during a phone conversation with Putin, the Russian leader had offered an apology over a claim by Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov that Adolf Hitler possibly had “Jewish blood.”

Hours later, the Kremlin issued a statement that included the full content of the conversation, making no mention of an apology.

Kremlin Spokesperson Dmitry Peskov also commented on this, saying that the conversation that took place between the two leaders was “exactly as disclosed” in the official statement.

Peskov did not directly affirm the absence of an apology in the Kremlin statement he referred to, opting for a more subtle approach.

“The [Israeli] prime minister accepted the apology of President Putin for comments by Lavrov and thanked him for clarifying the president’s view of the Jewish people and the memory of the Holocaust,” Bennett’s office said on 5 May.

Ties between Moscow and Tel Aviv have soured significantly since the start of Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine.

On 4 May, the spokeswoman for Russia’s Foreign Ministry, Maria Zakharova, said that Israeli mercenaries have been fighting side by side with the Ukrainian neo-Nazis from the Azov Battalion.

“There are mercenaries from Israel fighting alongside the extremist Azov Brigade … Israel will not be able to ignore this, especially with the presence of videos and materials documenting this,” Zakharova told Sputnik.

She also said that this collaboration could not be happening without Israel’s knowledge, and that Tel Aviv was aware of footage documenting the situation.

On the same day, the Kremlin welcomed an official delegation from Palestinian resistance movement Hamas, led by the deputy head of the organization, Musa Abu Marzouk.

Recent reports indicate that Israel is also considering an increase in its military support to Ukraine, at the request of the US.

Russia invaded Ukraine in late February, following Kiev’s failure to implement the terms of the Minsk agreements and Moscow’s recognition of the People’s Republics of Donetsk and Luhansk.

At the time, Russian President Vladimir Putin said one of the goals of the special military operation was to “de-Nazify” Ukraine.

Andrei Martyanov: Nuclear false flag, timing and victory in Ukraine – Geopolitical Reality

April 23, 2022

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Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova’s interview with “RT” TV Channel, Moscow, April 16, 2022

April 16, 2022

Question: It became known that during the special military operation in Ukraine, Russian troops discovered new documents on military biological activities in Ukraine. Can you talk about this in more detail?

Maria Zakharova: As a result of the Special Military Operation in Ukraine (SMO), Russia’s Armed Forces found documents that shed some light on the bio-military programme implemented by the US Defence Department in Ukraine. The researchers in the programme were studying the most dangerous pathogens – potential biological agents for biological weapons that have natural focuses in both Ukraine and Russia. They were also researching ways that epidemics spread based on these agents. The scale of work makes it obvious that a considerable, and probably the most important, part of the information on the American military programme remains concealed from the international community.

Speaking at a US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations hearing on March 9, 2022, Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs, Victoria Nuland, said Washington was trying to prevent the transfer of some research materials from Ukrainian bio-laboratories to Russian forces. During press briefings on March 7, 10, 17, 24 and 31, Chief of the Russian Armed Forces’ Radiation, Chemical and Biological Defence Forces Igor Kirillov described the US bio-military activities in Ukraine, based on the information obtained during the SMO in Ukraine by the Armed Forces of Russia. He also set forth conclusions based on expert analysis. Researchers continue to study these materials.

Question: What is Russia doing to see that the United States provides clarification on its military biological cooperation with Ukraine?

Maria Zakharova: Russia has made public the facts that have come to light to date at the UN and other international organisations and called on the US authorities to provide detailed explanations, but, predictably, Washington does not appear to be ready to share with the public any meaningful information on its military biological programme in Ukraine.

Furthermore, clearly, the White House thinks that offence is the best defence and has launched yet another propaganda campaign centered on the false assertion that our country’s efforts to draw the attention of the international community to the activities of US military biologists in Ukraine are allegedly nothing more than a smoke screen, which, they say, Moscow will try to use to cover up the potential use of biological or chemical weapons during the special military operation that is conducted by the Russian Armed Forces.

This crude attempt by the US to divert public attention from this dangerously explosive issue of US-controlled biological laboratories in Ukraine and to drown it in this “apocalyptic sensation” was – at first glance unexpectedly – strongly supported by German political leadership. A number of leading German politicians and top officials, including Federal Chancellor of Germany Olaf Scholz, have released statements that mimic the US narrative in the form of righteous threats and warnings directed at Russia. Berlin’s official proactive verbal stance remains in line with the strategy that it has pursued for a long time now in the context of the Ukraine crisis (which isn’t helpful in settling it now and which earlier led the Minsk process into a dead-end with its deliberate pro-Kiev slant), but nevertheless stands out in its blatant cynicism of the overall flow of anti-Russia rhetoric that has been coming from Germany in recent weeks.

First of all, in view of the key circumstance that even before the Russian Armed Forces started this special military operation, Germany, alongside the United States, had been conducting vigorous military biological activities in Ukraine for many years and, possibly, continues to do so. We strongly believe that this is largely what motivates Germany to be more active, as compared to other EU countries, in its attempts to ascribe to our country criminal plans concerning the use of biological and chemical weapons in Ukraine and the Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics, which have not yet been liberated.

Question: Are there any additional details about Germany’s military biological activities in Ukraine?

Maria Zakharova: For you to better understand the situation, I will cite the following facts. Since 2013, under the auspices of the German Federal Foreign Office, the German Government has been implementing the German Biosecurity Programme (GBP) which includes partnership projects with government agencies and research organisations in focus countries, which Ukraine became part of in 2014, the year of Maidan. German specialists from the Institute of Microbiology of the German Armed Forces (Munich), Friedrich Loeffler Institute (Greifswald-Riems Island), Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine (Hamburg) and the Robert Koch Institute (Berlin), which specialise in research of deadly biological agents, are engaged in practical activities.

According to the German Federal Foreign Office, the third phase of the GBP will be implemented in 2020-2022. We can infer from the publicly available materials that the GBP’s stated technical goals include, among others, the gathering of epidemic intelligence in third countries, including with the use of big data technology, and developing the infrastructure of partner countries for handling dangerous biological agents.

The Institute of Experimental and Clinical Veterinary Medicine in Kharkov has been the Institute of Microbiology of the German Armed Forces’ main Ukrainian counterparty since 2016, which we know from its own data. The two institutes cooperate under the Ukrainian-German project titled “Initiative on Biological Safety and Biological Defence in the Management of the Zoonotic Risks at the Outer Borders of the European Union.” The fact that its official goal is to “improve the biological defence and security situation” in Ukraine, “particularly in the east of the country” gives rise to the rhetorical question of which border the German military biologists consider an outer border for the purposes of their professional interests. Is it the Russian-Ukrainian border?

The Institute of Microbiology claims in its materials that the project is related to the “potential threat of biological terrorism” in Ukraine amid the unending hostilities in eastern regions of that country. It is crystal clear that this is a way to send a subtle message about ​​the DPR and LPR’s possible “involvement” in hatching plans for the use of internationally prohibited biological weapons. In so doing, the German military have been deliberately intimidating their Ukrainian counterparts for a long time and have, in fact, been psychologically pitting them against the Donbass republics. Ukrainian biological safety experts invariably participate in the medical biodefence conferences that are regularly held by the Institute of Microbiology of the German Armed Forces.

Obviously, to ensure protection against a potential biological attack, it is first necessary to study the potential biological agents with which it can be made. In other words, it is necessary to conduct research in the field of biological or chemical weapons. The Armed Forces of Germany (AFG) have enough knowledge and practical skills in this area, as was demonstrated by the scandalous incident with the mysterious poisoning of blogger Alexey Navalny. Specialists from the AFG Institute of Pharmacology and Toxicology – a military institution allied with the AFG Institute of Microbiology – supposedly very quickly detected in the body of the Russian citizen traces of some military toxin that NATO lists in the Novichok family. Such a high level of expertise –  if, of course, all statements were factually accurate –  suggests that the AFG is able to synthesise toxic substances independently, including the notorious Novichok and its markers.

Germany’s Friedrich Loeffler Institute that is in charge of the centre for the study of the most dangerous viruses and zoonotic infections on the Baltic Island of Riems, maintains active cooperation with the Ukrainian State Research Institute of Laboratory Diagnostics and Veterinary-Sanitary Expertise (Kiev), the State Scientific Control Institute of Bio-Technology and Strains of Microorganisms (Kiev) and also with the Institute of Experimental and Clinical Veterinary Medicine (Kharkov) that cooperates in parallel with the AFG Institute of Microbiology. In Ukraine, the Friedrich Loeffler Institute has focused on Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever. Soviet scientists discovered it for the first time on the territory of Russian Crimea in 1944. There is documented evidence that the institute commissioned its Ukrainian partners to collect samples of ectoparasite recipients of bats that were transferred to the afore-mentioned Reims Island under the existing agreements.

The Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine has concentrated its activities in Ukraine on extremely dangerous fevers – Denge, Chikungunya, West Nile and Usutu, to name a few.

This information on Germany’s bio-military activities in Ukraine is far from exhaustive. It cannot be ruled out that, as the special military operation progresses, additional documents will be discovered by the Russian Armed Forces. According to confirmed reports, Germany closely coordinated its work on biological security with its American allies that established a network of at least 30 biological laboratories in Ukraine. In addition to their other activities, they were involved in dangerous research.

We urge German officials to immediately stop spreading false allegations about our country’s intentions to use weapons banned by international law. We believe that such statements can only serve to push neo-Nazi battalions to commit horrible provocations, and moral responsibility for their tragic consequences will be shared by Berlin.

Zakharova: West Uses Expulsion of Russian Diplomats as Information, Political Attack

April 6 2022

By Staff, Agencies

Western countries in recent decades have begun using the declaration of Russian diplomats as persona non grata as an information and political attack, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told Sputnik radio on Wednesday.

“Over the last decades, the collective West has begun to use the declaration of Russian diplomats as persona non grata, that is, imposing sanctions on them, isolating them from the opportunity to work in the region they had studied… as a tool not of diplomatic work, but of information and political attack,” she said.

According to Zakharova, the West “necessarily needs to show some kind of heaping of their actions.”

“They call it solidarity, but it has nothing to do with it,” the diplomat added.

The spokeswoman then drew attention to the fact that the expulsion of Russian diplomats has always been carried out publicly, loudly, and demonstratively.

Western countries even went so far as to start making public the names of diplomats and providing their personal data, Zakharova said, adding that “All of this was accompanied… by conditions beyond our understanding, under which our diplomats had to leave the country.”

“All this was done on purpose to create a sense of guilt on the Russian side for something that no one had done, at least under the headlines under which Russian diplomats were expelled. There was nothing in terms of factual arguments, it was purely a verbal attack,” she underscored.

From Maria’s Office … the Fashion Nazi

April 02, 2022

Russian MFA 🇷🇺, [4/2/22 8:11 AM]
#Opinion by Maria Zakharova

💬 A few bloggers have reported today that official Chanel brand stores abroad are refusing to sell their products to Russian nationals.

Allegedly, Chanel customers must sign a form saying that they will not take the items sold by the brand to the Russian Federation, as per some internal document of the boutique chain.

We are a very patient and forgiving country. We have forgiven everyone for everything, turned the page and cleared the way for the future. But if the way turns out to be a ring road, we will break the vicious circle.Seems like those running the legacy of the “great Coco” have found a way to join the Russophobic “cancel Russia” campaign.

Weird, right? What’s the link between Russia’s anti-Nazi operation and the French fashion house?

But the link is there. We just opened a closet to find some well-preserved 80-year-old skeletons.

During World War II, Coco Chanel herself was a collaborator and a Third Reich agent. She is widely known to have had connections to the occupation authorities in France. Baron Hans Guenther Freiherr von Dincklage, an attaché of the German government in charge of the Nazi propaganda in Paris, was among her dearest friends.

Coco Chanel, also known as informer F-7124 as per Abwehr records, supported the German masters of Paris so much that she took part in the attempts to organise secret negotiations between the Reich and the United Kingdom. One should say that the Germans valued Coco and had her live in a luxurious apartment at the Ritz hotel, while ordinary Parisians struggled to make ends meet under the German occupation, while the country’s economy was under enormous strain.

Moreover, the fashion designer accepted the help of the Nazis to reach her business goals. Before the war, she sold her Chanel No. 5 production facility to Jewish manufacturers. Then, she engaged the Germans to try and reclaim the rights to the perfume sale profits.

After France was liberated, she was called to answer for all of that. The fashion house does not advertise it but Coco was arrested at the end of the war. She was later released as a favour to Churchill (and here is London again) and was banned from France after the occupation was over, for years, residing in the “neutral” Switzerland.

The brand’s management has always emphasised that the Chanel house traditions are as strong as ever. Well, no doubt about that now. Investigative reporter Hal Vaughan wrote about the founder of the fashion house: “The Nazis were in power, and Chanel gravitated to power.”

The brand was never bothered by such things as concentration camps, mass killings and war crimes perpetrated by the SS and Gestapo divisions.

We are a very patient and forgiving country. We have forgiven everyone for everything, turned the page and cleared the way for the future.

But if the way turns out to be a ring road, we will break the vicious circle.

And the Chanel house can get back to square one and support Nazism, just like its founder did. But now everyone will know.

Yes, of course posted by Amarynth, for the women here!

Opinion by María Zakharova: BioBiden

March 27, 2022

Opinion by María Zakharova:


We can get a rough idea of the US political elites’ involvement in the military biological activity in Ukraine if we rely on open sources as well as leaked documents. Below is an attempt to reconstruct the chronology of this involvement, though not a comprehensive one. There are many gaps in this truly diabolical plan that are still to be filled.

1991 – the US launches the Nunn-Lugar programme for the former Soviet countries to control/eliminate Soviet weapons of mass destruction including bioweapons. The Pentagon’s Defence Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) was named as the programme’s main executor.
1993 – the Ukraine-US Agreement on the Prevention of Proliferation of WMD is signed.
2005 – an additional protocol is signed to the agreement between the Ukrainian Health Ministry and the DTRA on the prevention of the proliferation of technologies, pathogens and know-how that can be used to develop bioweapons. This is the start of the transfer of the Ukrainian military biological potential into US specialists’ hands.

2000s – large US military-industrial companies are engaged in military biological activity in Ukraine.
2005-2014 – Black & Veatch Special Projects, a DTRA contractor, builds and upgrades 8 biolabs in Ukraine instead of eliminating military biological infrastructure, as was originally claimed. One of the facilities, a biolab in Odessa, has been financed since 2011 for the study of “pathogens that can be used in bioterrorism attacks.”

2007 – US DoD employee Nathan Wolfe founded Global Viral Forecasting Institute (subsequently – Global Viral), a biomedical company. The mission stated in the charter is non-commercial study of transborder infections, including in China.
2009 – Rosemont Seneca Partners is established by former US Secretary of State John Kerry’ stepson Christopher Heinz and incumbent US President Joe Biden’s son Hunter Biden.
2014 – anti-constitutional coup d’etat in Ukraine.
2014 – Hunter Biden joins the Board of Directors of Burisma Holdings, a Ukrainian energy company.
2014 – Metabiota, a private commercial organisation specialising in the study of pandemic risks is detached from Global Viral. Neil Callahan and John DeLoche, employees of Hunter Biden’s company Rosemont Seneca Partners are appointed to the board of Metabiota. Global Viral and Metabiota begin to get funding from the US Department of Defence.
2014 – Metabiota shows interest in Ukraine and invites Hunter Biden to “assert Ukraine’s cultural & economic independence from Russia”.
2014 – Metabiota and Burisma Holdings begin cooperation on an unnamed “science project in Ukraine”.
2014 – Metabiota, Global Viral and Black & Veatch Special Projects begin full-fledged cooperation within the US DoD programmes.
2014-2016 – Implementation of Metabiota and US DoD contracts, including a $300,000 project in Ukraine.
2016 – US citizen Ulana Nadia Suprun, a descendant of Ukrainian Nazis, is appointed Acting Health Minister of Ukraine. The US DoD and Ukraine’s Health Ministry cooperation programme is greatly expanded.
2016 – an outbreak of swine flu among Ukrainian Defence Ministry personnel guarding a biolab in Kharkov, Ukraine; 20 dead. The incident is hushed up.
2016 – former US Assistant Secretary for Defence Andrew Weber is appointed head of Metabiota’s global partnerships department.
2016 – EcoHealth Alliance, a Global Viral founder Nathan Wolfe’s structure, is engaged in the study of bat-transmitted coronaviruses at the research centre in a Wuhan laboratory, China.
2016 – the DTRA and Ukraine’s Health Ministry extend the contract after getting approval from the Ukrainian Defence Ministry.
2019 – the COVID-19 mutated bat coronavirus pandemic begins with an outbreak in Wuhan.
February 24, 2022 – launch of the Russian Army’s special operation in Ukraine.
February 24-25, 2022 – rapid elimination of strains in biolabs in Ukraine.
March 8, 2022 – US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland openly acknowledges the existence of cooperation between the US and Ukraine in pathogens.

Cutting Through the Fog Masking ‘a New Page in the Art of War’

MARCH 10, 2022


By now what we may call a Triple Threat has been established as the catalyst anticipating the launch of Operation Z.

  1. Ukraine developing nuclear weapons. Zelensky himself hinted at it in the Munich Security Conference.
  2. U.S. bioweapons labs in Ukraine. Confirmed, tersely, by none other than the Sinister Cookie Distributor neocon wife in the uber-neocon Kaganate of Nulands, who described them as “biological research facilities”. ”
  3. An imminent attack on Donbass with massive civilian deaths. It could have been in March, according to documents seized by the Russian Ministry of Defense. Or even in late February, according to SVR intelligence, which was monitoring the line of contact on a minute-by-minute basis. This is what eventually prompted Operation Z as a Russian version of R2P (“Responsibility to Protect”).

So after years of CIA-instigated shouts of “conspiracy theory!” and less than zero “fact checkers” activity, it turns out “it was all happening in Ukraine”, as divine messenger Maria Zakharova once again pointed out: “We have found your own products. We have found your biological material.”

The first-class investigative work of Dilyana Gaytandzhieva on Pentagon bioweapons was fully vindicated.

Based on documents received from Ukrainian biolab employees, the Russian ModD revealed that research with samples of bat coronavirus, among other experiments, were conducted in a Pentagon-funded biolab.

The purpose of all this research – which included another Pentagon project to study the transfer of pathogens by wild birds migrating between Ukraine and Russia and other neighboring countries – was “to create a mechanism for the covert spread of deadly pathogens.”

In trademark pysop mode, everything was turned upside down by the United States government: those evil Russkies could take control of biological samples, so any “accident” involving biological and chemical weapons in Ukraine would have to be blamed on Russia.

The White House, in yet another flagrant display of unredeemable stupidity, accused Russia of “false claims” and China of “endorsing this propaganda”.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov came up with the adult perspective: “The whole world will be interested to know what exactly the American bio-laboratories in Ukraine were doing.”

Down on the ground

Meanwhile, defying the fog of war while being targeted by Kiev’s free distribution of weapons without any measure of control, civilians on the path of Operation Z confirmed over and over again that Azov neo-Nazis prevent them from escaping encircled towns and villages. These Banderastan fanatics are the shock troops transforming Ukraine into a large Idlib – according to His Master’s Voice’s plan.

Neo-Nazis are doing exactly what ISIS/Daesh did in Syria: hiding behind civilians taken as hostages. Azov are the white clones of ISIS/Daesh. After all they learned their tactics from the same masters.

They will be bolstered by a fresh contingent of 450 fighters just arrived from – where else – Idlib, including lots of non-Syrians from Europe and the Maghreb. Most though are al-Qaedites and members of the Syrian branch of the Turkestan Islamic Party. Their transit point: the Syria-Turkish border, a smuggling free-for-all.

As it stands, the most detailed macro-view of how strategic Operation Z is developing has been outlined here. The inestimable Andrei Martyanov describes it as a “combined arms police operation”: a delicate crossover between formation-level warfare (“combined arms”) and a police operation to arrest and/or destroy criminals (the full extent of “demilitarization” and “denazification”).

For an undiluted, down and dirty, eye to the ground perspective (translated into English), it’s hard to beat Russian military man

Alexander Dubrovsky. He stresses how the objectives of the operation are “strategy and tactics”; and proceeding with haste is out of the question in this “completely new page in the art of war.”

Cutting through the fog, no one could realistically expect any breakthrough out of the meeting between Foreign Ministers Lavrov and Kuleba on the sidelines of the Diplomatic Forum in Antalya – as much as Turkey may have played a constructive role.

The non-government in Kiev is simply not allowed by the Empire to negotiate anything. The only tactic in town is stalling. Operation Z – or “the war” – could be stopped with a simple phone call from the Comedian in Kiev.

Lavrov at least was quite explicit on some key issues. Russia does not want war; never used oil and gas as a weapon; and wants Ukraine to be neutral.

The West, Lavrov added, refuses to understand the concept of “indivisibility of security”; those who supply Ukraine with weapons and send mercenaries should understand “they’re responsible for their actions”; and referring to the hysterical sanctions swamp, he stressed, “we will do everything to no longer depend on the West in any strategic sectors of our life.”

It’s quite enlightening to juxtapose Lavrov with clueless NATOstan “analysts”, totally ignorant of Eurasia and pontificating about “a new ideological conflict between irredentist tyrannies and liberal democracies”. It’s about sovereignty, stupid – not ideology.

NATOstan of course is incapable of understanding the process of Nazification of Ukraine – the key theme of any serious political/cultural/sociological analysis. It’s not an accident that the list of nations supporting the neoNazi-infested collapsed government in Kiev happens to largely coincide with the list of nations that refused to vote in favor of the UN resolution condemning the rehabilitation of Nazism.

In historical terms, these “analysts” might learn something by reading Mikhail Bulgakov’s The White Guard. Bulgakov considered Ukraine as an avowedly reductionist version of “the steppe”: culturally barren, not capable of creating anything, destined to barbaric destruction. It’s important to remember that when Ukraine attempted to constitute itself as a state in 1918-1920, cultural and industrial centers such as Odessa, Kherson, Nikolaev, Kharkov, Luhansk had never been Ukrainian. And western Ukraine for a long while was part of Poland.

All aboard the Eurasian train

On the economic front, the dogs of hybrid war bark while the Eurasia integration caravan marches on – with the Empire irretrievably being pushed outside of the Eurasian landmass.

In a phone call prior to the Lavrov-Kuleba meeting in Antalya, President Erdogan suggested to Putin setting up a trading mechanism in gold and also rubles, yuan and Turkish lira to beat the Western sanction hysteria. The source is Abdulkadir Selvi, very close to Erdogan. No Russia-China official comment yet.

The key fact is that Russia, China, and for that matter the entire Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) – responsible for at least 30% of global GDP and the bulk of the Eurasian market – don’t need the West at all.

As Peter Koenig, a former senior economist at the World Bank points out, “Western GDP has a different basis, with blown out of proportion services, whereas the GDP of the SCO and the Global South is production-based. A huge difference when one looks at the backing of currencies: in the West there is literally none. Eastern currencies are mostly backed by national economies, especially in China and soon in Russia too. That leads to self-sufficiency, and no longer reliance on the West.”

In the larger geopolitical spectrum, the non-stop war of attrition by the Empire against Russia with Ukraine as a pawn is a war against the New Silk Roads; Maidan in 2014 took place only a few months after the launching of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), then OBOR (One Belt, One Road) in Kazakhstan and Indonesia. It’s also a war on the Russian concept of Greater Eurasia Partnership. In sum: it’s an all-out war on Eurasia integration.

And that bring us to the key aspect of BRI: Eurasia rail/road connectivity – between China and the EU and with one corridor traversing Russia. The coordinated NATOstan sanction hysteria is not only against Russia, but also against China.

For the Beltway, BRI is beyond anathema: it’s almost like the Beast of the Apocalypse. As a response, the West even has concocted puny schemes such as the American B3W (“Build Back Better World) and the EU’s Global Gateway. Their impact, so far, does not even qualify as negligible.

Ukraine in itself is not a problem for BRI; traffic is only 2% of eastbound China-Europe freight trains. But Russia is another story.

According to Feng Xubin, Vice Chairman of the China-Europe Railway Express Transportation Coordination Committee, the freight settlement system between China and Russia may be in trouble: “At present, freight is denominated in dollars […] If the West cuts off Russia’s intermediate settlement channel in the international financial system, it means that the settlement system for freight charges between China and Russia will not be able to proceed normally.”

From the EU’s point of view, trade interruptions are not exactly a good deal. China-EU freight traffic increased over 100% last year.

For instance, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) are co-financing a 67 km high-speed rail stretch from Istanbul to the Bulgarian border.

Sanctions on Russia will definitely affect the trans-Eurasia supply chain – on transportation, ports, insurance, communications. Yet quite a few sanctions may be revised later on, as the EU itself starts to feel the pain.

China will have an abundance of Plan Bs. The key northern BRI corridor remains China-Kazakhstan-Russia-Belarus-EU, but there is a possible detour via the Caspian, in Aktau in Kazakhstan. There will be extra incentive to fully link the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars (BTK) railway with the Turkish grid. And there will be extra movement in the International North-South Transportation Corridor (INSTC), with Baku connecting to the Iranian Caspian Sea coast and by rail to ultra-strategic Chabahar port.

So we may be heading towards extra impetus for BRI’s multimodal southern corridor – bypassing Russia: that means a boost for Turkey, the Caucasus and the Caspian. And no losses for China. As for Russia, even if this re-routing may last for a while, it’s not such a big deal. After all from now on Russia will be developing intensive trade towards the east and south of Eurasia, and not towards the sanctioning West.

(Republished from Strategic Culture Foundation by permission of author or representative)

Briefing by Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, Moscow, March 3, 2022

MARCH 07, 2022

The Ministry of the Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation

  1. Upcoming talks between Sergey Lavrov and Foreign Minister of Kyrgyzstan Ruslan Kazakbaev
  2. Ukraine update
  3. Race-based discrimination in Ukraine
  4. African Union statement on hostility against Africans trying to leave Ukraine
  5. On Western countries using the Nazi salute
  6. US military biological activities in Ukraine
  7. The UN General Assembly adopts a resolution titled “Aggression against Ukraine”
  8. Illegal Western sanctions against international humanitarian cooperation
  9. Bringing Russian citizens home from abroad
  10. Statements by Japanese Foreign Ministry Department Director
  11. Statement by the Friends of Crimea International Association on the Situation around Ukraine
  12. The anniversary of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons
  13. The 25th anniversary of the IORA

Answers to media questions:

  1. China’s stance on the situation in Ukraine
  2. Expulsion of the staff of Russia’s permanent mission to the United Nations
  3. Expulsion of Russian diplomats from Bulgaria
  4. Settling the Ukrainian crisis
  5. Russia‒China trade cooperation
  6. Coverage of the Ukrainian conflict by British media
  7. Russia’s relationship with the EU
  8. Suspension of Russia’s rights of representation in the Council of Europe
  9. Potential suspension of Russia from other international organisations
  10. Establishing a Russia‒US communications channel on the situation in Ukraine
  11. Prime Minister of Pakistan’s visit to Russia
  12. The EU’s double standards
  13. Information war against Russia
  14. Efforts to normalise the situation in Afghanistan
  15. Russia‒Iceland relations
  16. Denazification in the context of the situation in Ukraine
  17. Russia’s possible withdrawal from international organisations
  18. Organising humanitarian corridors to evacuate Indian citizens from Ukraine
  19. India’s stance on the situation in Ukraine
  20. International Women’s Day greetings
  21. Refusal of certain countries to join the Western anti-Russia sanctions 

Upcoming talks between Sergey Lavrov and Foreign Minister of Kyrgyzstan Ruslan Kazakbaev

On March 5 in Moscow, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will have talks with Foreign Minister of the Kyrgyz Republic Ruslan Kazakbaev during the latter’s official visit to Russia.

This meeting is launching a series of events scheduled for 2022 to mark the 30th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Russia and Kyrgyzstan (established on March 20, 1992).

During the talks, the ministers will discuss topical issues of bilateral cooperation in politics, trade and the economy, cultural, humanitarian and other areas. They will also exchange opinions on issues pertaining to Eurasian integration, as well as global and regional security, including in the context of the events in Ukraine, and cooperation at international platforms.

They plan to sign a Programme of Cooperation between the foreign ministries of Russia and Kyrgyzstan for 2022‒2024, as well as a joint statement by the foreign ministries of the two countries following Foreign Minister Ruslan Kazakbaev’s official visit to the Russian Federation.

We expect that the meeting between the foreign ministers of Russia and Kyrgyzstan will contribute to the further strengthening of the Russia‒Kyrgyzstan strategic partnership and alliance.

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Ukraine update

I would like to draw your attention to the interview Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has given today, which was devoted entirely to this subject. He took questions from the international media. Its transcript will be available on all the Ministry’s resources.

We have come up against an unprecedented information attack, against information terrorism. It is taking place not only in the media but also in cyberspace. The attack is being directed from the West, and it is being implemented also through Ukrainian resources and capabilities. Ukraine and its infrastructure are being used as instruments. The goal of this attack is to misinform the international community and to discredit Russia’s actions. In this context we need to explain the real state of affairs.

On February 24, 2022, Russia began a special military operation in Ukraine. The reason for this was the eight-year-long policy directed by the Ukrainian authorities, the Kiev regime against its own people and Russia. That regime came to power as a result of a series of anti-constitutional events organised in Ukraine by the West.

One of the main, though not the first or only such event was the 2014 coup. It was carried out by the neo-Nazi forces with Western support. For eight years after that, the new regime systematically violated human rights and the rights of minorities, infringed on freedom of speech and the media, waged a war on the Russian language and culture, eliminated political opponents, conducted a civil war in Donbass, and sabotaged the efforts of the international community, primarily Russia, to find a legal solution to the conflict, as well as the Minsk agreements.

At the same time, Ukraine was being supplied with Western weapons, which were delivered to it in huge amounts. It was being turned into a bridgehead, not just of individual states of the NATO bloc which directly threatens Russia. This was taking place against the backdrop of the destruction of the global security architecture and in the absence of any security guarantees for our country.

I would like to point out that the West has not provided such guarantees to any state, not even to NATO members. The decisions are made there by those who stand at the helm. Our country was not just offered any security guarantees; they have been denied to us. Not offering and denying are two different things. We have the written replies that leave no doubt as to the intentions of NATO and those who control it, that is, the United States, regarding any possibility of discussing issues that are not only important and vital to us but concern our very existence. They have rejected all our proposals. They refused in writing to discuss all our proposals with us. This is why we demanded written replies. If we hadn’t done that, there would have been hue and cry now that they – the West – had been misunderstood, that they didn’t mean that, and that they offered Russia continued dialogue. But no, they rejected our proposals in writing.

We were speaking about the role of the Ukrainian regime in international relations.  Ukraine and the Ukrainian people have been turned into an instrument of Western policy. The current actions by the Ukrainian regime (even if you had not known about the causes of the situation in Donbass, seen the photographs, talked with witnesses, or read the documents of international organisations and non-governmental agencies) leave no doubt that the country is being governed by criminals. The West is supplying them with weapons. These criminals are using civilians as human shields and are hiding in residential districts, flats and houses. They are doing everything they can, not sparing the lives of their citizens, foreigners or civilians in general, to create a certain picture of events and present it as a reality.

It is important to study archival data. We will present them so that you will be aware of what they have been perpetrating over these past eight years.  One can and must speak about what the international community discussed but failed to hear because of the Western propaganda.  One can and must see what is going on live on air. How the thugs wielding Western weapons, thugs who have not been legalised through their involvement in the Armed Forces of Ukraine, who are in fact Nazi-chevron-wearing members of punitive battalions known as Azov, Donbass, Right Sector, etc., took positions behind civilians. They are the same people, to whom they (as everyone was told and as Washington was saying) were bringing freedom and democracy. Now the whole world can see how you bring freedom and democracy. You are doing this based on nationalist principles, while hiding behind the backs of women and children. You are doing this, while manipulating public consciousness with huge support from the US and UK security services, and NATO countries in general.  They are using you and have no compassion for you (I am referring to the Ukrainian militants). We feel compassion for the people, for those who regarded you as their true defenders, while you are thugs and marauders pure and simple.

The armed forces of Ukraine and the neo-Nazis are using peaceful civilians as a human shield and deploying heavy weapons in residential areas.  This is a fact. You can ban this from screens all you want – I am addressing CNN, BBC, and others – but people will find out anyway and will be able to tell the difference between fakes and the truth. They are not evacuating civilians. Worse, they are doing all they can to get as many civilians as possible remain in the “hotspots” by imposing a curfew and mining exit roads from cities.  These tactics are always used by terrorists, who are accustomed to taking civilians hostage.

We are receiving numerous appeals from embassies of other countries in Ukraine asking us to help them provide a safe escape for their citizens and diplomats, as well as for employees of international organisations. We do all we can (this is primarily being done by the Defence Ministry) to give them the necessary help.

The situation in Ukraine is being aggravated by an uncontrolled growth of crime. This has been intentionally provoked by the Ukrainian authorities who have issued tens of thousands of units of firearms to everyone who would take them. Convicted criminals have been released from prisons. As soon as they are issued arms, they form criminal gangs that attack and kill their fellow Ukrainians. As a result, a wave of looting, marauding and murders has swept through the country. Nationalism is assuming extreme forms verging on outright racism. Nationals of Asian and African states are facing discrimination and violence. The obvious aim of these actions is to create havoc and cause as many civilian casualties as possible.

Unlike the neo-Nazi battalions that intentionally destroy or disable critically important infrastructure, the Russian military are doing their best to ensure the safety of these facilities.  A case in point is a joint mission by Russian paratroopers and Ukrainian soldiers to guard the power plants, the sarcophagus, and the repository for spent nuclear fuel at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. The area around the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant is also being guarded and controlled. Both power stations are operating normally. We would like the relevant international organisations to take note of this, since Ukraine has been supplying them with false information. Please get first-hand information.

As you may know, direct Russian-Ukrainian talks have taken off the ground in Belarus.  We hope that they will bring an end to  this situation as soon as possible, facilitate the restoration of e peace in Donbass and a return of all of Ukraine’s ethnic groups to a peaceful and fair life.

Take another look at the tactics of those whom the Kiev regime has assigned to conduct talks.  How many hours does it take them to reach their destination? Upon arrival, they say they are tired and hit the hay. They would bicker over a venue for the negotiations and over their seats… Does this show concern for their people? Of course not. They have direct instructions from the US security services. They have no compassion for the people of Ukraine. They don’t care. The longer they do the bidding of the Kiev regime, the more suffering will befall their fellow Ukrainians. But who in Vladimir Zelensky’s underground shelter is thinking about this?

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Race-based discrimination in Ukraine

Numerous media publications about race discrimination in Ukraine have come to our attention.

Manifestations of racism and racial discrimination in today’s Ukraine, including with regard to the citizens of Asian and African countries currently residing there, students being beaten, attacks on the citizens of the countries that refused to condemn  Russia, being aware of what has been going on [in Donbass] all these years; rough treatment of Africans who wished to leave Ukraine; and the way citizens of China, India, etc. are being treated. Unfortunately, this is nothing new to the people who are aware of what happened there and it stems directly from those developments. It has always been that way. Earlier, foreigners were under their radar screens, but now they are, first, being used to stage provocations, and, second, deep down, these nationalists don’t care about a thing.

This shocking situation comes in the wake of the current Kiev authorities and their predecessors doing nothing to overcome the problem of nationalism. For opportunistic and political reasons, their Western curators did more than just turn a blind eye to this and did everything to ensure the growth of neo-Nazi ideology. After all, it is not their country; it is somewhere “out there” in the distant nation of Ukraine populated, according to the US President, by Iranians. They are oblivious to the fact that the citizens of their countries – the United States and the European Union – may also be there now. Who are they supplying with weapons? Someone who will kill people left and right?

The anti-Semitism, xenophobia and racial discrimination that are flourishing in Ukraine today are the very things that we have been talking about tirelessly over the last eight years and that the West, I mean Euro-Atlantic institutions,  have tried hard to ignore, and they have taken good care of and almost nurtured the ideological followers of Nazism instead. If, with so many materials available, you are unable to see it for yourself, then you don’t want to see it. In fact, you haven’t seen it. Now, you are left with what you have.

It is particularly strange to see the European states that experienced the horrors of the Second World War turn a blind eye to the threat of the revival of the “brown plague.” However, maybe it’s not so strange.

Once again, I would like to draw your attention to the Ministry’s annual reports on the human rights situation in individual countries, the manifestations of Nazism around the world, as well as individual reports on that country, which provided regular analyses of the human rights situation, indicating the widely spread racism and neo-Nazism. The current situation with foreign citizens in Ukraine is yet another confirmation of this.

Ukraine’s stance on this matter speaks volumes because it is one of the few countries (more precisely, one of two countries) that regularly, every year, votes against the resolution titled “Combating the glorification of Nazism, neo-Nazism and other practices that contribute to fuelling contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance,” which Russia submitted for consideration by the UN General Assembly

The US prohibited EU countries from joining this resolution and voting for it. You do not see this, either? This is your position, the position of the Western countries. As a reminder, this document raises acute issues related to the growth of extremely dangerous manifestations of neo-Nazism and racial discrimination, the spread of hateful ideology and the theory of racial superiority in the modern world.

Ukraine has adopted a similar stance with regard to yet another important initiative in the sphere of combating racism, namely the resolution titled “A global call for concrete action for the total elimination of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance and the comprehensive implementation of and follow-up to the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action.” In particular, when reviewing the document during the 76th session of the UN General Assembly in December 2021, the Ukrainian delegation simply chose not to vote, and a year before that, it abstained from voting. What is that if not links in a single chain? Does this not prove that they openly mocked these issues of counteracting the spread of Nazi and racist factology? Of course, that’s the way it is. They are not hiding it. They benefitted from staying close to the extremists professing neo-Nazi ideology. Why? Because nationalism is an ideology that people with low cultural and moral levels take up easily. Spreading this ideology is easy. All you need is a little money, weapons, and materials saying that one race is superior to another, and one nation is not as good as the next one. That’s it. They can then be conveniently used during Maidan protests or for political purposes in order to orchestrate the allegedly “righteous” public wrath, which in reality is nothing but the forceful pressure of the street. This is an accurate description of Ukraine’s political life in recent decades. There was also the first Maidan protest, which unfolded under the colour orange, as a supposedly peaceful initiative, although it was a paid-for move. A PR campaign of similar proportions costs a lot of money. Maidan in 2013-2014 brought together extremists and militants who had been trained in camps in Poland and the Baltic countries. How many times have we mentioned this? The Baltic States and Poland condemn us. How about you taking a look at yourselves?

In its statement of February 28, the African Union expressed concern about the situation involving citizens of various countries in Ukraine noting that Africans being singled out for unacceptable dissimilar treatment would be shockingly racist. I see the point the African Union is making. But Russian lives also matter. And this is exactly how Russians were treated there during eight years. Perhaps, we should not be dividing people by skin colour or religion? Perhaps, we can feel the pain of other people, too? Perhaps, some day we will see hashtags like #russianlivesmatter?

Clearly, ignoring and even openly refusing to recognise the obvious existence of problems in the field of combating racism, looking up to the United States when reviewing manifestations of racism and racial discrimination as the implementation of some kind of “freedom of speech” (now we can see it and know its value in the West) not only leads, as experts say, to a “human rights impasse,” but is also an absolutely irresponsible position that leads to the suffering of people, or even entire national, ethnic or racial groups.

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African Union statement on hostility against Africans trying to leave Ukraine

In their official statement on February 28, Chairperson of the African Union, President of Senegal Macky Sall, and Chairperson of the African Union Commission Moussa Faki Mahamat expressed deep concern about incoming reports of hostile attitude towards nationals of African countries trying to leave Ukraine.

Senior officials of the African Union urged “all countries to respect international law and show the same empathy and support to all people” fleeing the area of the special operation “notwithstanding their racial identity.”

We fully concur with this statement. Is it possible to extend it to our entire life? Not just this specific case. It should become a prevailing concept in national legislations of every country and international law (as long as Washington, London and Brussels do not destroy it completely).

We fully support the stance of this pan-African organisation. On our part, we would like to note that, as of today, the Russian Foreign Ministry has no information about requests from nationals of African countries for permission to cross the border between the LPR, the DPR and the Russian Federation. At the same time, diplomatic missions of several African countries have contacted the Russian Foreign Ministry with requests to arrange evacuation of their nationals, students of Ukrainian universities. We are working on these requests in cooperation with the Russian Defence Ministry.

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On Western countries using the Nazi salute

We noted that a whole number of countries, including Canada and the EU countries, senior officials of these countries, foreign ministers, senators – representatives of their legislative branch – public figures and politicians are using the same slogan that has become a national salute in Ukraine in the past years. We talked about this before. I do not want to say this slogan out loud but I will definitely include it in the transcript of this briefing. I refuse to pronounce it.

Here is brief historical background for all those who use these two words [three in English, Ed.], a comma and an exclamation mark. In August 1939, fascist Italy hosted the second congress of the Organisation of Ukrainian Nationalists. One of the decisions of this congress was to adopt the Ukrainian fascists’ salute, “Glory to Ukraine!” and the response “Glory to heroes!” The salute and the response were adopted as a symbolic greeting. It was a call sign, a code word of sorts to distinguish between friends and foes. In a similar manner, they forced people in Ukraine to count themselves off by asking the question “Which country does Crimea belong to?” It was the same logic. You are deprived of your own opinion. There is only one correct opinion – of the militants in Ukraine. If you have your own point of view, a strong civic stance that goes counter to their idea of what is best, you have to press your face to the ground. Didn’t you know many other examples in the West? Of course, you did. You knew and you kept silent. What Western media outlets are doing right now is a crime. Everybody must know about it.

It was the same salute that collaborationists used to greet the Wehrmacht and the SS – not only between themselves but to identify themselves to Hitler’s SS. Allow me to remind you, in case you do not know, that the SS and the Wehrmacht were those who organised the genocide of Jews, the Romany and Slavic ethnicities in Ukraine, Belarus, Poland and Russia. Or is “genocide” a word I cannot use even here? Do we have no right to use it now? Or is there some conscience left and we can still use the word “genocide” in the context of WWII? Perhaps, more people died then and the conflict was longer? No, it did not last longer but indeed, more people died. Should we have waited longer? Until the next time presidents, prime ministers and foreign ministers use the same salute and being called neo-Nazis baffles them?

All these years, Russia has been publishing reports drafted by the Foreign Ministry, as well as by other agencies and organisations, on grave human rights violations in Ukraine. I am talking about crimes perpetrated on nationalist grounds. In 2014, the Foreign Ministry, and then in 2015, Russia’s Investigative Committee published their White Books on crimes committed in Ukraine. Do you think we have hidden it in a secret library? Of course not. It is available on the Foreign Ministry website and on social media. We sent it to all our partner countries and international organisations.

The Foreign Ministry regularly releases reports on human rights violations in Ukraine and on violations of the rights of Russian citizens and compatriots abroad.

I would like to draw your attention to the book by Maxim Grigoryev and Dmitry Sablin titled “Ordinary Fascism. Ukraine’s War Crimes and Human Rights Violations in 2017-2020.” Year after year, we reported on this matter with evidence on hand. On top of that, Russian journalists carried out their own investigations. Not the foreign journalists, I mean the Western journalists – it was almost impossible to get them there.

Just recently, we circulated a presentation on the war crimes committed by the Ukrainian leadership in Donbass at the session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva (February 28). You can find it on the website of Russia’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations Office in Geneva. This is a terrifying photo report depicting people who were killed, and the destruction caused in Donbass. Today, when they lament about the casualties, while we offer our condolences to all the families, just remember that you tacitly accepted the atrocities for all these years. Let me repeat what I have been saying all along. An awakening of the conscience cannot happen suddenly.

There is no shortage of evidence from multiple sources. Some documents are publicly available, including on the Foreign Ministry website. It has been facing DDoS attacks, specifically designed to prevent us from releasing all these documents. We understand that not everyone reads these documents, while some of those who do pretend otherwise. We will draw your attention to these materials again and again.

Since April 2014, the representatives of the Ukrainian armed forces and law enforcement agencies have been ignoring the international agreements and acts by massively shelling Donbass communities, killing and wounding thousands of civilians who were never involved in the military conflict. They used indiscriminate lethal weapons, prohibited under international humanitarian law. Many communities, primarily along the line of contact, were left without water, gas or power, mobile phone services, or the supply of food and medicine. People died when Ukrainian shells exploded, or from hunger, lack of water or medicine.

The Ukrainian army was especially cynical when shelling hospitals, morgues, and schools where there were bomb shelters. They also shelled cemeteries. This is what led to the creation of mass graves for civilians who fell victim to Ukraine’s military and political leadership and their Western curators.

As of December 2021, more than 16 spontaneous mass graves and burial sites were discovered. In one of them, the remains of a four-month-old baby were found. Between August and November 2021, the remains of 295 people were unearthed, studied, and processed. The preliminary forensic examination of the remains from all the burial sites on LPR and DPR territories showed that women and the elderly accounted for most of the casualties who died from firearms, mortar explosions or blunt trauma.

Apart from killing people in Donbass with shells, Kiev enforced a water, economic and transport embargo on Donbass, bringing the region to the brink of a humanitarian disaster. Living in most cities along the line of contact was akin to surviving in an all-out war. This lasted for eight years. The Kiev regime did not want to draw a line between civilians and combatants.

The people of Donbass lived in these conditions for eight years, not a week!

International human rights organisations noted these issues by saying that the conflict unleashed by the Kiev authorities in southeastern Ukraine had a negative impact on all the population, impoverished it and resulted in the stagnation of its economy. The share of the population with extremely low incomes increased in 2013-2015. Juan Pablo Bohoslavsky (Argentina), an independent expert on foreign debt and human rights, visited Ukraine in May 2018, and wrote in his report on this trip that retirees living in Donbass had to regularly cross the line of contact and register as internally displaced persons in order to receive their pensions. This means that they had to do paperwork with shelling going on. They had to do all this just to get their pensions. They risked their lives and had to assume substantial expenses. Many of them were killed. According to the expert, more than 600,000 retirees did not receive the payments they were entitled to.

The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women took note of these issues falling within its mandate, highlighting the gap between the law and the way Ukraine implemented it. In particular, the committee noted that a law on the rights and freedoms of internally displaced persons was adopted in October 2014, alongside several decisions and directives to help internally displaced women, but nothing was done to carry them out.

In August 2016, the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) highlighted the plight of displaced persons. The Committee expressed concern that social benefits, including pensions, were tied to IDP status and residence in areas controlled by Kiev, which is why not all internally displaced persons have access to such benefits; local integration of IDPs was complicated by existing legal and regulatory frameworks; they also had difficulties with access to suitable affordable housing and decent employment; restrictions on freedom of movement made it difficult for IDPs to access social services, education and healthcare.

The Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination also noted that people were exposed to physical danger when crossing the line of control. They could come under fire or be wounded by anti-personnel mines planted by forces controlled by the Kiev regime. All these factors prevented members of ethnic minorities from registering as IDPs and receiving social assistance. Most of these individuals were also at risk of discrimination and stigmatisation.

Developments in this area have been regularly monitored by OHCHR and the OSCE SMM. All these materials were available, they were published – but no one cared to read them.

Head of the UN Human Rights Monitoring Mission in Ukraine Matilda Bogner (Australia) in March 2020 brought to Kiev’s attention the need to start paying pensions to residents of the uncontrolled regions of Donbass, calling on the newly formed government and parliament to review the draft law on pensions in accordance with human rights norms and resume the lawmaking process on a priority basis. Again, this is how international law was trampled by Kiev’s Western supervisors. They didn’t want to see it, they laughed at it, like it was nothing. Until they talk about it on CNN, no one is interested, no one makes a big deal about it. This is not something they said at a briefing at the White House or at the State Department, and then hyped on American television channels. Right now, they can quote the UN and at the same time pressure the relevant representatives, including UN representatives, to extract the necessary reaction. This has worked. They have faithfully fallen into line to give the UN reaction to events. Where were they before? These are materials from the United Nations and other international organisations.

While monitoring the situation with the right to liberty and security, international human rights groups have recorded numerous facts of illegal detention, torture, intimidation, abuse and sexual violence. Similar examples are regularly included in the reports of the Human Rights Monitoring Mission in Ukraine.

All these years, there have been numerous violations of people’s right to trial and defence in criminal cases linked with the conflict in Donbass. There is a widespread practice of forcing persons under investigation to sign plea deals and hearing cases in absentia, attacks on lawyers and intimidation of lawyers by radical right-wingers, and putting pressure on representatives of the judiciary.

Law enforcement and SBU officers systematically used torture and violence against detainees and had absolute impunity. Cases of illegal detention, torture and abuse of persons detained on charges related to the conflict in the southeast were regularly recorded by international missions. This directly involved the ethnic groups that lived there.

Various techniques were widely used to extract confessions. There have been complaints that the SBU or investigative authorities forced people to confess to being members of, or having links with, armed groups. The National Police or the SBU published several such videos as an example of how to behave and how representatives of the Ukrainian security forces could behave. At the same time, even according to international missions, the detainees made statements incriminating themselves as a result of torture, abuse or intimidation by SBU officers. I am quoting specific reports, and we will post links to them later today. We are told we don’t talk about it enough. We have been talking about this for eight years, right here, in this room, and at international venues, and at our embassies. Just go to the Foreign Ministry website and search Ukraine, Donbass, Donetsk, or Lugansk. Just try it yourself and you will see hundreds of materials on this subject. It’s not that we didn’t say enough; they just didn’t want to hear it.

The international organisations Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International have issued a joint report, with reference to their 2016 investigation, about the illegal and violent nature of the detainment of people by employees of the Ukrainian security services and investigative authorities. Such incidents include cases related to expressing disagreement with the official policy of the Kiev authorities. For example, a person was illegally held by the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) from November 2014 to February 2016 for taking part in anti-Maidan rallies and events in defence of Soviet monuments. He was accused of planning terrorist attacks, tortured and otherwise ill-treated, which has done very serious harm to his health. He also reported that the cells in which he was kept were overcrowded, and the people in them, including those with disabilities and the elderly, were systematically beaten and were detained for the exchange of prisoners of war. After his release, Konstantin Beskorovainy, the person I am talking about, along with other former prisoners, officially filed a complaint against the actions of the SBU. During the investigation, there were unreasonable delays in the proceeding, and victims were intimidated, so that many people refused to participate in the criminal process. Among other things, the territorial office of the military prosecutor attempted to change the applicant’s status from victim to witness and to close the case. The investigation was reopened after several appeals.

Torture of detainees by the SBU was also confirmed by persons who took part in the exchange of detainees between Kiev and the Lugansk and Donetsk people’s republics. In particular, persons who returned from the government-controlled territories after the exchange of detainees on December 29, 2019, said that SBU officials and members of the Azov far-right group tortured them to obtain confessions. In particular, prisoners were forced to make false confessions and to testify about their alleged sabotage training near Rostov. The detainees were subjected to beating, strangling, mock hanging or drowning, tortured with electric shocks, and threatened with reprisals against their loved ones. This information has been reported by the media and is available in the public domain. (1234)

Exchanged persons also said that they had been kept in secret SBU prisons before being sent to detention centres. At the same time, several days to several months passed from the actual detention to its official registration.

According to the human rights ombudsman of the Donetsk People’s Republic, Daria Morozova, all detainees released by Kiev confirmed that they had been subjected to illegal interrogation methods.

Russian citizens who travelled to Ukraine from Crimea were subjected to illegal persecution. Criminal cases were opened against them on charges of treason, infringement on territorial integrity and inviolability, creation of paramilitary and armed groups, and assistance to terrorists and separatists. In January 2020, they detained Ivan Antonov, a person with impaired hearing, who was returning from a pilgrimage to the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra. In early November 2020, Nikolai Fedoryan, department head at the Chernomorneftegaz state company in Crimea and former deputy head of the Ukrainian Interior Ministry for Crimea, was detained and charged with “assisting the occupation authorities during searches and illegal detentions.” There are many more such documents. We will publish all of them.

As for procedural irregularities, they happened all too often. In December 2018, SBU employees searched the premises of members of the Russian-speaking community in Poltava. Sergey Provatorov, coordinator of the Coordinating Council of Russian Compatriots of Ukraine and head of the Russian Community association, was forced to give up his Pushkin Medal.

Criminal proceedings were initiated against historian Yury Pogoda, a prominent expert on the Great Northern War, and Viktor Shestakov, poet, journalist and head of the Russian Community in Poltava, who have been charged under Article 110 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (“encroachment on the territorial integrity and inviolability of Ukraine”).

In May 2019, SBU employees searched the premises of Vladimir Saltykov, head of the Transcarpathian regional association Rus, during which they seized cell phones and PCs. These persons were socially active citizens who did not take part in hostilities or calls for action. They only took a civil stand, which has led to years of persecution.

In August 2020, SBU agents detained Tatyana Kuzmich, a Russian language and literature teacher with years of experience and head of the Rusich Russian National Association, on charges of treason, which sparked a public outcry. She did much to promote the Russian language in Ukraine. We have reported this and have cited the relevant facts. The Ukrainian security services claimed that she was recruited during her stay in Crimea and supplied secret materials to Russia.

This information was made public in Ukraine to set the public against these people, not to mention the publishing of their personal data by the notorious Myrotvorets website.

We had been trying for years to raise the attention of international organisations and the United States, which failed to vote for the UN General Assembly resolution condemning the glorification of Nazism and all forms of racism, xenophobia, discrimination, and intolerance, under the pretext of avoiding infringement on freedom of speech. At the same time, they refused to denounce the continuing operation of Myrotvorets for the same reason. This is incredible. It cannot be that people do not see obvious things, that the personal data published on this website have led to the persecution of people, including journalists, socially active citizens and researchers, who have not called for anything bad but have only taken a civic position.

Forced Ukrainization and language discrimination against a considerable part of society, including flagrant violations of the rights of Russian speakers, are an integral element of the policy of the Kiev authorities, the Kiev regime.

Starting in 2017, Ukrainian law has consistently been adjusted to prohibit the use of any language other than Ukrainian in the public sector, the education system and the media. The adoption of several laws, including On Education and On Ensuring the Functioning of the Ukrainian Language as the State Language, has introduced discriminatory restrictions against the Russian language compared to Ukrainian, the official EU languages and the languages of indigenous peoples. Other laws were also adopted to ensure the forced Ukrainization of public life, the media, television and services.

Ukrainian radicals have regularly staged aggressive actions against those who continued teaching the Russian language. In March 2020, nationalists organised the persecution of school teachers in Lvov who were accused of spreading “the propaganda of the Russian world” and “the russification of Ukrainian children.” An aggressive campaign was launched in April 2020 against Pavel Viktor for his physics video lessons in Russian.

In November 2020, Professor Valery Gromov of the Dnipro University of Technology (Dnepropetrovsk) was forced to resign after a female student officially complained that he was giving his lectures in Russian.

Yevgenia Bilchenko, a lecturer at the department of cultural studies and philosophical anthropology, National Pedagogical Drahomanov University (Kiev), who initially supported Maidan but later revised her views, was dismissed in January 2021 after criticising the law On Ensuring the Functioning of the Ukrainian Language as the State Language on social media.

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US military biological activities in Ukraine

Numerous materials on US military biological activities in Ukraine have been made public recently.  On March 2, Natural News, rightwing bioethics website, posted a journalistic investigation into the Pentagon’s relevant activities that run counter to Washington’s obligations under the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production and Stockpiling of Bacteriological (Biological) and Toxin Weapons and on their Destruction. According to the website, various facilities created under the aegis of the Department of Defence (Federal Agency for Threat Prevention), including the Science and Technology Centre in Ukraine (CTCU), have recently received hundreds of millions of US dollars in funding for clandestine scientific and applied research.  The author, Ethan Huff, does not rule out that the outbreaks of different diseases observed in the region (flue, cholera, Zika virus, and others) could be caused, among other things, by America’s military biological activities in Ukraine. Just read the article for yourself.

For their part, specialists have highlighted another aspect. In late February, the US Embassy in Ukraine unexpectedly removed from public access all documents related to military biological cooperation between Washington and Kiev. The earlier posted documents were deleted.

Just imagine that NATO has supplied a huge amount of offensive weapons of various types, without the slightest justification, to a location in the centre of Europe in direct vicinity of Russian borders, where Russian citizens live in addition to numerous other people who find themselves in these territories by a twist of fate.  At the same time, the US and Ukraine have been actively promoting their biological cooperation, including experiments and the like, in the same sector. Apart from everything else, all of this is accompanied by NATO-Ukraine military exercises, held once every six weeks, where Russia is the hypothetical adversary.  To top it off, the Ukrainian president makes a statement that they are ready to consider the possibility of Ukraine acquiring nuclear weapons, which comes amid a wild nationalist frenzy in the Armed Forces of Ukraine, who regard all Russians as their main enemy. The time has come, they say to the entire international community (which is now pretending that it is shocked) at the Munich Security Conference. But why wasn’t it shocked at the idea that a country with so many problems and overflowing with Western weapons can have nuclear weapons in addition? (It has the capacity for that and, of course, support from the United States.) Actually, it might already possess dirty nuclear technologies. Shall we wait somewhat longer? But for what? Senior representatives of the United States say they had no intention of talking to Ukraine about deploying nuclear weapons. No plans! But who do we believe? They are the people who have systematically lied for decades, while launching under the cover of lies military operations all over the world, resulting in millions of victims. There is an important nuance that makes this story even more dramatic. The thing is that the United States, which has nuclear weapons as a matter of official record, has them not only on US territory. Few people in Russia, let alone the world, know about this. Who is keen to know? The United States has its nuclear weapons in several countries of Europe. Practically next door to Russia. At the same time, the European countries, their armed forces and their intelligence services have no ability whatsoever to control these weapons. Is that normal?

Given that for years or, in truth, decades the Kiev regime has been under the US yoke, it could have relied on the people’s will, made a selection of public opinion, and held a referendum, which would really assess the Ukrainian people’s attitude to having nuclear weapons. But even hoping for this is out of the question. The results of the vote would have been rigged. NATO are old hands at that. The decision would have been taken. And when the weapons would have been deployed in the territory of that weakly controlled state, the situation would have been totally different. This is a state whose nationalist forces are infected with the bacilli of nationalism; it is unable to diffuse its years-long bloody internal crisis; its politicians are each nationals of two or three countries and they have no idea at all about national interests. They have for years catered to the interests of NATO countries alone. Then we would have had an absolutely different situation on our European continent and directly on Russia’s borders.

I see the United States and its NATO partners, as well as the world as a whole watch with sinking hearts as North Korea launches missiles. (North Korea has withdrawn from the Non-Proliferation Treaty.) It pursues a policy of its own and gives grounds for it. When we have any grievances, we certainly communicate them. But the West is united in the belief that North Korea has no right to possess nuclear weapons or undertake missile launches.

But what about Ukraine? We can talk all we want about the regularity/irregularity of its political system, the plusses and minuses, but Ukraine has had no political system other than external control. Its other possession is the nationalist battalions, which were only nominally part of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and were really just squads of militants trained in neighbouring countries.

As for the US biological activities in Ukraine, the Americans have clearly tried to pretend like nothing happened and sweep any trace of it under the rug. This topic is also a source of concern for us.

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The UN General Assembly adopts a resolution titled “Aggression against Ukraine”

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov spoke at length today on international reactions. I will not go over it again. A transcript is coming soon. The video is already available which provides a thorough analysis of the vote on March 2 at the UN General Assembly. The resolution was adopted. The Western countries, led by the United States, made incredible efforts to make sure this document was widely approved. Every method of influencing the delegations in New York and in the various capitals was used. They used overt blackmail, attempts at bribery and threats of sanctions.  Don’t tell us this was the unified voice of the General Assembly. So much for a united “voice” with the sanctions gun pointed at the “head” of a state, which, in principle, is unable to oppose it and has no other way out of it. It looks very much like the developments that have been unfolding for many years in Ukraine. Love your homeland in Ukrainian, but if you do so in Russian, “you are not a person, but a species.” This is what President Vladimir Zelensky said about those who disagreed with the Kiev regime on certain issues. However, the resolution was not unconditionally supported. Dozens of countries refused to vote for it. However, no one is saying that it was not adopted. Of course, it was. No need to distort its meaning. It is obvious. The methods used can be clearly seen as well. The Western media are playing an enormous role in this, the wailing voices of the correspondents who have never experienced problems in their lives and have never demanded accountability from their regimes. There is no doubt that the adoption of the resolution runs counter to the tasks at hand. The document will simply embolden the Kiev radicals and nationalists to continue their criminal actions. They have taken civilians as hostages.

This resolution will be used to continue the abuse of the Russian-speaking people, the deployment of military equipment in densely populated residential urban areas in Ukraine (contrary to international law), and the unchecked distribution of weapons, including to inmates who were cut loose. The regime is fighting on its own territory, distributing weapons to civilians and is releasing inmates convicted of criminal offenses. As a reminder, we are talking about a state that has chosen democracy and has for many years been talking about a democracy that had practically won in that country. Weapons were distributed among die-hard criminals, not political prisoners. Moreover, they put an emphasis on “those who participated in hostilities” and are “experienced.” Who participated in what battles? Not only that, they fought their own people. If you give them weapons, they will start shooting not just their own people, but they will use the weapons for looting, robbery and violence.

The outcome of the vote at the General Assembly and the UN Security Council once again highlights the international community’s inability to take effective measures to force the Kiev authorities to fulfill their obligations under the Minsk agreements.

For our part, we are ready to continue the talks with Ukraine in order to prevent further bloodshed, as the Russian leadership has repeatedly stated.

Mass violation of Russian media outlets’ rights in Western countries

Over the past few days, the real, not declarative, value of “Western values” has become crystal clear. The ongoing developments in the global information space can be described as depriving Russia of any chance of making its point of view known on unfolding international developments. The worst thing is that the international community is deprived of the opportunity to know the point of view of the other side and to have access to the materials that describe reality as it is. They themselves whipped up hysteria around Ukraine, and have now taken away the voice of the media that provide materials straight from the region.

With its February 27 decision, the Council of the European Union introduced a ban on Russia Today and Sputnik broadcasting throughout the European Union, which the EU member states rushed to comply with. US digital platforms, such as Google and Meta, swore allegiance to them in a heartbeat and began blocking media accounts in various countries across the board. Apple, Android, and Microsoft have removed Russia Today and Sputnik apps from their stores, etc. We have been talking about this for years, including at international venues. No one was interested. Now they are just finishing what they started back then.

The governments of Australia, Canada, and Uruguay did not hesitate to resort to censorship in the spirit of pseudo-solidarity with the so-called liberal democratic world. Twelve investigations into Russia Today have been initiated by the British regulator Offcom. Truth be told, they didn’t just do this, but did it a little earlier in order to be done just in time for the right moment. This is some kind of elaborated Jesuitism where you know something, but are still preparing the legal grounds in advance, just in case.

The fact that Russian journalists can at least do some work there is because London is concerned about risking the BBC’s position in Russia, since it has been assigned the important role of undermining domestic political stability and security in our country, which follows from recent public statements by British Foreign Secretary Elizabeth Truss. Many countries have gone even further. They have chosen to eliminate Russian-language broadcasts on their territory altogether, because the anti-Russia version of the cancel culture makes this possible. It is being implemented before our eyes on an ever-larger scale and affects all spheres of life without exception, including culture, education, sports, medicine and everyday life.

The Baltic countries are trying particularly hard. Going through the list of the TV channels they banned would probably take half the time allocated to this briefing. In Estonia, they went as far as “cleaning” their shelves of Russian magazines and newspapers. Moldova chose to use the commotion to put an end to Sputnik broadcasting once and for all. They blocked the media operator’s website and shut down its radio broadcasts. The European Alliance of Professional Associations is pushing to expel Russian journalists from the International Association of Journalists and to stigmatise the entire media community solely because it speaks Russian.

The West has declared a campaign against the Russian media, and this campaign is not over yet. The list of media sources that have been incapacitated or blocked is updated almost hourly. At the same time, in all cases of widespread blatantly Neanderthal-like censorship that has been in existence for many years now as a pretext for annihilating Russian broadcasting in the West and depriving millions of their citizens of popular alternative sources of information, these “beacons of democracy,” without bothering to provide any justification, declare Russian mass media outlets peddlers of propaganda and a threat to their security.

Of course, the fact that the media from the NATO and EU member countries, the United States and Canada, including their Russian bureaus, are spreading die-hard hastily concocted disinformation and fake news and, without a shadow of doubt or embarrassment, are working to destabilise the situation in our country and are publishing calls to commit illegal actions does not bother anyone. This is different. The speed and effectiveness of implementing the measures that violate all the basic principles of freedom of speech and pluralism of opinion clearly shows that this scenario has been planned for years.

Our Western partners have long been willing and planning to simply cross Russia out of the global media space. They started thinking about this the moment we appeared in this space and at the first signs of success for Russian media outlets, which have been in business for many years and have proven their objectivity. It all started right there. Our Western partners are following a programme to systematically remove us from the media space. It goes without saying that no facts have ever been provided, but the playbook was there for everyone to see. The West worked hard and long to promote a convention on helping journalists and protecting their safety when they cover armed conflicts. Armed conflicts always have at least two sides, occasionally more. These sides operate their media. You would have been right if you had said right off that it was not about protecting journalists in hot spots, but about depriving one of the conflicting parties of a means of communication and the dissemination of information. Indeed, in many respects the West has pioneered the development of the provisions and draft laws, both within the given country and at the international legal level, which were supposed to protect journalists as they cover hot phases in conflicts. Now, you are using this pretext to turn off these very media outlets, whose journalists are working in hot spots. How is that?

It has long been clear to us that it is pointless and useless to talk with the international human rights agencies that have sprung up in inordinate amounts in recent years. This is also part of the responsibility of the OSCE institution in question, which, with tacit consent, greenlighted the persecution of Russian journalists and Russian-speaking media and failed to protect journalists who cried out about what was happening in Ukraine, Donbass, etc. This is part of your tacit complicity in creating and provoking this global crisis. All these institutions, agencies and NGOs have been working for a long time now and with varying degrees of loyalty to cater exclusively to Western interests. They bring up freedom of speech and other rights and freedoms only when Washington and the key capitals of its allies give them an approving nod. There may be different points of view on everything. But it’s a proven fact that only one position was correct during all these years, and only one media source could be heard, which led to a collapse and a formidable crumbling of the international legal system, which is supposed to be objective and fair and which should have a place for different points of view. When this fails to happen, a conflict tends to escalate.

I would like to address those behind this act of execution of freedom of speech. You have dealt a cowardly and treacherous blow to Russian journalism and your own people who have a guaranteed right to receive information that does not fit into your mould. It is particularly important to provide such an opportunity during a crisis. You have pulled off your masks as loyal adherents of democracy and revealed the false nature of your demagogy on human rights. Will you learn anything from the current situation or will the answer once again be, “this is different?”

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 Illegal Western sanctions against international humanitarian cooperation

The Western world extending illegal restrictions on the international humanitarian sphere is not just beyond the scope of international peace; it is directly aimed at discriminating against ordinary people whose rights the Western champions of democracy so vigorously defend on all international platforms. Sanctions that affect the freedom of movement, the freedom of expression and access to cultural achievements and information, limit the development of cultural and sports cooperation and contacts between people, are absolutely unacceptable. They grossly violate the provisions of the Helsinki Final Act of the 1975 Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe.

This discriminatory anti-Russia campaign includes cancelling shows by Russian cultural and art figures abroad; Western universities are expelling students, and the organisers of various individual and team competitions are suspending athletes just for being Russian. I have just heard a new version – they are now saying that foreign teams or individual athletes are refusing to participate in any competition that includes Russians. So, let them abstain and fulfil their wish. They also have the right to be heard. If they don’t want to participate, respect that. Our people want to participate, and they have been training for this for years. I think they have proven many times that sport should be outside politics by continuing to participate despite what you call sanctions, all types of pressure and discrimination, despite all that we call injustice. Gritting their teeth, under pressure from the stands and from international sports officials alike, having seen the mockery of national symbols and of our culture, they go ahead and do their job. They keep reaching out to their colleagues to the end, even being aware of the risks – including to athletes from Ukraine, many of whom later hissed behind their backs. Our athletes have been above all this. They have endured everything – humiliation, real humiliation, discrimination, the use of all forms and types of pressure, and harassment. Now this anti-human, discriminatory campaign has gained unprecedented momentum, although this was an expected consequence. Everything around is being cancelled.

The most egregious cases that have caused a worldwide outcry include the cancellation of concerts by Valery Gergiev, Denis Matsuev, and Anna Netrebko at the La Scala theater in Milan. The demands made by the Munich city government and the La Scala management in Milan that they dissociate themselves from Russia’s policy is something unheard of. Maybe they should also give you a Nazi salute? Do I have to say something to you against the background of the swastikas that you see in Ukraine? Do you think this is an isolated case? It’s just that Gergiev is a celebrity of such status that this could not go unnoticed. How many of our professors at foreign universities, doctors at Western clinics who have been treating their citizens, and their family members have received similar threats, demands, humiliation, and insults? For what? Because your governments have supported the war in Ukraine for eight years, “have not seen” it, giving you – as democratic societies – no chance of reacting? Now the Russians are to blame for this, too? Oh no. The Bavarian State Opera considered it possible to cancel their contract with world-famous Anna Netrebko on the same grounds. As for Valery Gergiev – do you not understand why he couldn’t do it? Do you not understand what he has gone through, taking more than one bloody conflict like this close to his heart? He played in Syria during bombardments by western-sponsored “moderate” militants. Gergiev brought people back to life in Syria and around the world. He gave hope to those who defended statehood in Syria, with curse words and shells shot at our backs. Who did you want to break? The man who saw South Ossetia after Mikhail Saakashvili was done with it? Have you asked this of him? Maybe you asked it of someone else? Well, try it.

The International Mathematical Union Executive Committee’s move to exclude its Russian member from its meeting cannot be called anything other than immoral. As a result, in his absence, a decision was made to cancel the International Congress of Mathematicians in St Petersburg in July 2022. The actions by a number of Western universities are simply outrageous, as their administrators try to take out their anger on Russian students because they are dissatisfied with our country’s policies.

Other such incidents also deserve mention, such as the IOC recommendation to international sports federations not to invite Russian athletes to participate in competitions. Is this the International Olympic Committee? Have they not seen, or are they unaware of how much pressure has been exerted on our athletes for years? We have no other interpretation of such actions but as an attempt to harm our athletes, to eliminate strong rivals. You can’t put up a fair fight, so you are doing what you can? This will not lead you to your intended goal. It will destroy your world. In fact, these calls by the IOC leaders, which go beyond common sense, violate Olympic principles and the very concept of ​​​​both the Olympic movement and international sport.

We are confident that cooperation in education, science, sports and culture has always been and must remain outside politics. This is not a call to think again; it is a call to realise that such actions direct international processes towards self-destruction. This mechanism has been launched, and no chance of reversal can be seen at this point.

We said exactly the same things when the West tore Kosovo away from Serbia. You were warned how it would be. We talked about international terrorism and Afghanistan. It is impossible to just keep silent, indulge this and pretend that nothing is happening. This is our common planet. Our one and only. For all the achievements of the space industry in each country, we still cannot fly away. We live here, all together. When they closed the skies to Russian planes without giving any information, I understood the world has crossed a line, that politicians who run today’s world have passed the point of no return. I actually realised this even during the pandemic.

The mayhem unleashed against Russia, the attempts to isolate and even exclude our country from the humanitarian landscape are not just part of a Russophobic campaign. Basing conditions for participating in cultural, scientific and sports events on the political allegiance of the artists, scientists and athletes is a direct path to civilisational crisis. Even in Soviet times, the period of global confrontation between two ideologies, famous musicians, dancers, actors, artists, and scientists could give concerts, participate in exhibitions and symposiums around the world, and athletes could compete in international tournaments.

All I can do is offer my sympathy to the West, because their “high moral values” have not helped them avoid using humanity’s humanitarian heritage as a political bargaining chip.

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Bringing Russian citizens home from abroad

Given that some countries have closed off their airspace to Russian airlines, it is recommended that tour operators and airlines organise alternative flights to bring Russian nationals back home, including using the airports of the third countries and land checkpoints, as well as combined routes (air/car or railway).

Russian nationals can submit information about themselves and their location by filling in a special form on the Foreign Ministry website

We also suggest following updates from the Federal Agency for Tourism, the Federal Agency for Air Transport, the Foreign Ministry and the nearby Russian diplomatic missions in the media and on social networks.

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Statements by Japanese Foreign Ministry Department Director

We have noted that Japanese Foreign Ministry Department Director Hideki Uyama, during the parliamentary hearings on February 28, 2022, drew a parallel between the special military operation in Ukraine and the southern Kurils’ accession to Russia. Leaving aside the well-known fact that the said islands were transferred to our country in accordance with international law following World War II, during which Japan suffered a devastating defeat, we want to point out the obviously revanchist subtext of the Japanese diplomat’s words. We consider it proof that certain forces in the Japanese political establishment keep in mind the possibility of realising their territorial claims against Russia. We recommend that they forget about such an “option” once and for all.

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Statement by the Friends of Crimea International Association on the Situation around Ukraine 

We, representatives of the Friends of Crimea International Association, in connection with Russia’s decision to conduct a special military operation for Ukraine’s demilitarisation and denazification in accordance with Russia’s treaties of friendship and mutual assistance with the Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics, affirm the following.

All sensible people on Earth realise that Russia cannot feel safe against the backdrop of anti-Russia actions by the nationalist regime in Kiev, the deployment of NATO military facilities in Ukraine, Ukrainian leaders stating their intention to start developing nuclear weapons as blackmail, and the US and NATO refusing to guarantee that the alliance will not expand further. The last straw for Russia’s patience was the shelling of Donbass cities and the resulting death toll, which continued to mount even after Moscow’s recognition of the DPR and the LPR, as well as Kiev’s refusal to back down from its plans to “clear out” their territories by force of arms.

Since the founding of our association in 2017, we have issued repeated public calls to stop the blockade of Crimea and the flagrant violations of the rights of its residents, to consider the Russian position and resume constructive dialogue between the West and the Russian Federation, and to respect the principles of equal and indivisible security for both sides.

We share the view expressed by the Russian leadership that Ukrainian nationalists will never forgive the residents of Crimea for the free choice they made in 2014. We agree that the current Kiev regime is prepared to stage armed provocations against the peninsula.

Ukraine’s adventurist project, known as the International Platform for Crimea’s De-occupation, or the Crimean Platform, which the West supported in 2021 and signed as an official document, was bound to sharply exacerbate tensions around the peninsula and the rest of the Black Sea region because its goal was to question and threaten Russia’s territorial integrity. All friends of Crimea who organised in their respective countries demanded that their governments abstain from this provocative venture. Unfortunately, our appeal to stop the world’s unmistakable slide toward armed conflict was not heard either in the United States or in Europe.

As such, we join all peace-loving people on Earth in calling for the elimination of this neo-Nazi hotbed in Europe, in Ukraine, and urging the ruling circles of the United States and other NATO countries to stop the pointless and dangerous actions taken against the people of Crimea and start a constructive dialogue with Russia on ensuring mutual security on an equal basis.

We stand for peace in Europe and the rest of the world and for friendly and equitable relations between all nations.

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The anniversary of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons

March 5 marks 52 years since the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) took effect. This document is the cornerstone of nuclear non-proliferation and one of the pillars of the modern world order in security.

Tested for reliability by decades, the NPT continues to serve the interests of all states, both nuclear and non-nuclear countries, by ensuring international stability and predictability as well as enabling all countries to benefit from the peaceful use of nuclear energy.

The Russian Federation has always been and continues to be fully committed to this treaty, by taking significant efforts to promote a world free from nuclear weapons. We intend to pursue this noble goal further.

It should be noted that in the current extremely difficult geopolitical circumstances, there are direct threats to the functioning of the NPT. It is deeply alarming that the Kiev regime has started dangerous games, attempting to acquire its own nuclear weapons. These attempts must be stopped.

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The 25th anniversary of the IORA

March 7 marks 25 years of the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA). We want to congratulate our organisation – Russia joined it in November 2021 as a dialogue partner – on this remarkable anniversary.

In the past 25 years, the association emerged as an effective multilateral platform for cooperation around the Indian Ocean and became an important element of regional security and sustainable development architecture.

Our country is committed to close practical cooperation in different areas of focus of the IORA, including countering COVID-19 and putting socioeconomic recovery on a steady trajectory.

We are interested in fruitful and pragmatic cooperation based on the principles of equality and respect for the legitimate interests of each state. We are confident that constructive and inclusive cooperation is a mandatory condition of further positive and dynamic development of the Indian Ocean states and a response to trans-border challenges.

We wish the association success, prosperity and new productive achievements.

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Answers to media questions:

Question: China must decide where to stand on the situation around Ukraine, Chair of the Board of Directors of the National Committee on US-China Relations and former Secretary of the Treasury Jacob Lew said on Monday. What is your opinion of that call and current relations with China?

Maria Zakharova: The People’s Republic of China, one of the largest global powers, has an independent and balanced foreign policy and can do without the Americans’ arrogant pointers. We can see that Beijing has also taken a balanced attitude to the Ukrainian problem. China has repeatedly called for respecting the principle of indivisible security and has pointed out that trying to ensure regional security by expanding military blocs is unacceptable and that Russia has reasons to be concerned. At the same time, China does not hesitate to tell the truth about the real role of the United States in the Ukrainian crisis, whose actions have provoked a dramatic aggravation. Chinese representatives at the UN have been consistently upholding this position.

The calls by senior US officials to choose a side in the conflicts Washington itself is fuelling and financing is a shopworn method of Anglo-Saxon diplomacy, which has been based on the “divide and rule” principle for centuries. The Americans have been using this unscrupulous tactic not only in Europe but also in absolutely all international situations that include an element of the sides’ disagreement. It is obvious that China has not risen to the bait.

Our relations with our Chinese friends are based primarily on mutual respect, mutual trust and a balance of the partners’ main interests. We greatly appreciate Beijing’s readiness to take an objective and unbiased stand on the Ukrainian issue. We will continue to maintain close ties on the entire range of international and regional issues in the spirit of strategic partnership.

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Question: When will Russia announce its response measures to the expulsion of 12 diplomats from the Russian Permanent Mission to the UN in New York? Will the response be symmetrical?

Maria Zakharova: I would like to note that a comment on this subject was posted on the Foreign Ministry website yesterday.

I can add that the United States continues pushing Russian representatives out of UN bodies in violation of all arrangements and its own obligations under the UN Charter and the Host Country Agreement.

One of the expelled 12 diplomats from Russia’s Permanent Mission to the UN is the last Russian officer officially assigned to the Office of Military Affairs at the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations. At the same time, Washington has refused to issue visas to other candidates from the Russian Defence Ministry who have long been approved for their positions.

They are doing this with the silent agreement of the UN Secretary-General and the UN Secretariat, the obedient extras to the lawless policy. We are not going to tolerate this, and we have announced openly that we will respond at the bilateral level, for example, by targeting the quota of the US diplomatic presence in Moscow, which is still calculated based on the number of our personnel at the UN.

We could also expel US diplomats, although we don’t want to do this again. But Washington’s insolence and unwillingness or inability to come to agreement may leave us no other choice.

We urge the US to act reasonably and to stop escalating the situation.

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Question: Ho can you comment on Sofia’s decision to expel two Russian diplomats? When will we reciprocate? Why was that decision taken yesterday?

Maria Zakharova: On March 2, the Bulgarian authorities declared two diplomats at the Russian Embassy in Sofia persona non grata. As before, no reasonable explanation for that decision or any proof of our diplomats’ “inappropriate” activities have been provided. The local media have launched a frenzied propaganda campaign.

Considering that this latest attack on Russian diplomats in Bulgaria was synchronised with similar unfriendly actions in several other countries, we regard this as part of an unprecedented and impudent Western campaign to demonise Russia.

We regard this decision as a brazen provocation, especially in view of the fact that the Sofia authorities took this step on the eve of March 3, a sacred day in our common history: the anniversary of Bulgaria’s liberation from the Ottoman rule as a result of the Russo-Turkish war of 1877-1878 .

Russia reserves the right to take response measures.

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Question: On Tuesday, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said it welcomed talks between Russia and Ukraine. How do you assess the possibility of settling the crisis around Ukraine via talks? What could be the key to resolving this crisis, from Russia’s perspective?

Maria Zakharova: Speaking about talks, both sides have to want to take part in them to begin with. You can see how inconsistent they are in their statements: they don’t want to participate, it would be hard to get there, they got lost on the way, they are tired and so on. We can see clearly that this is done to slow down the negotiation process. So, if they want to talk and reach agreements, we have been ready and open from the very beginning.

I would like to note once again that Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov answered this question in detail today.

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Question: According to the official spokesperson of the Chinese Foreign Ministry, China and Russia will continue to cooperate in trade as usual. Would you like to comment on this?

Maria Zakharova: We share the Chinese ministry’s point on view in this. Relations between Russia and China are an example of neighbourly, mutually beneficial cooperation, and our trade and economic ties are long-term, strategic and not affected by the political situation at any given moment.

The trends in bilateral trade show that there is enormous potential for further growth. Last year trade grew almost one third and set a new record, $140 billion. The heads of state set a goal of significantly increasing it.

We intend to continue deepening our strategic cooperation in energy, which is of great importance for ensuring the economic security and successful development of the two countries. During President of Russia Vladimir Putin’s visit to China on February 4, 2022, Gazprom and China National Petroleum Corporation signed a contract to supply gas from the Far East. Plans are being developed to expand exports of Russian energy products to China. Extensive cooperation prospects can be seen in the peaceful use of nuclear power, where we and our Chinese partners have significant experience of successful cooperation.

We will continue to focus on large joint projects in various spheres, including in the Russian Far East. The intergovernmental commission has set a list of several dozen prospective investment goals. All of them will be supported and implemented consistently.

There are agreements to further develop and deepen cooperation in the sphere of space, science and innovations, as well as ICT and other high-tech fields, in transport. We can see major potential in agriculture, above all in increasing the volume of Russian agricultural products supplied to China.

We believe that in this difficult situation we and China, which also speaks out against unilateral restrictions, will be able to ensure the stable and progressive development of bilateral economic cooperation.

I would also like to stress that the West (which, of course, has many faces, and many of its elements are not independent), this Anglo-Saxon world would never stop. It needs resources in all senses of the word: energy, finance, human, ideological, all kinds of resources. It’s like an insatiable monster that consumes everything in its path for its own satisfaction and survival. They won’t stop with us or with China. A real sanction war broke out against China, though Beijing fulfilled all its economic contracts and responsibilities in good faith. It began on quite a limited scale with us, but it was clear that these sanctions would escalate. Today they have stopped hiding their true goal. This goal is to destroy us from the inside: the economy, finance, society and so on. They won’t stop there, they will keep going through world, destroying everything in their path. In fact, this is what they always do.

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Question: Andrey Kozyrev twitted this message to you and your colleagues the other night. He said you were professionals and not cheap propagandists. “When I was at the Foreign Ministry, I was proud of my colleagues. Now it’s impossible to support this bloody, brother killing war in Ukraine.” He called on all Russian diplomats to resign in protest. Mr Kozyrev obviously was the first foreign minister of Russia after the dissolution of the Soviet Empire. Would you resign and stop spinning cheap propaganda?

Maria Zakharova: We posted a comment on this on social media. Haven’t you seen it?

Question: Yes, but I would like to get your answer on the record, if possible.

Maria Zakharova: But that was our answer. You can quote directly from it, so I don’t have to read it again. You know what? Do you remember what years Andrey Kozyrev served as Foreign Minister?

Question: Yes, but I remember very vaguely. It was a long time ago.

Maria Zakharova: Indeed, but we remember this time very well. As a matter of fact, he served as Foreign Minister from October 1990 until January 5, 1996. You may remember that his years in this position coincided with the horrible events in the North Caucasus. You, British journalists, presented the tragedy in the North Caucasus along the same lines as the quote you just read. You called it a “bloodbath,” a “conflict,” or “Caucasus fighting for democracy and freedom.”

What did Andrey Kozyrev tell you at that time? What did he say when Britain and its Foreign Office received the terrorists and extremists from the North Caucasus, and Margaret Thatcher had tea with them, while Vanessa Redgrave called them Britain’s best friends, including Akhmed Zakayev? Do you know who Akhmed Zakayev is? This is related to your question about propaganda. This was a man who built a propaganda machine to whitewash extremism and terrorism in the 1990s in the Caucasus, when Andrey Kozyrev served as Foreign Minister. He was accepted by the British elite who greeted him as a friend. This answers the question on whether you are consistent in following your principles.

I do believe that there is consistency in what you do, but no principles. Learn your history and read Andrey Kozyrev, but not just on Twitter. Read the statements he made during these years, read how Moscow requested that London and Washington stop supporting terrorists from the North Caucasus. Read Moscow’s calls to the NATO countries, primarily Great Britain, to stop supporting extremism and the bloodbath in the 1990s. When you finish reading this and understand the history of our country, maybe then you will understand the real meaning of what we are doing rather than just using cheap slogans and propaganda-inspired talking points.

Question: I am not using propaganda slogans. I am simply quoting the words of a former foreign minister of Russia saying that it is impossible to support this bloody brother killing war in Ukraine. He called on all Russian diplomats to resign in protest. Would you resign?

Maria Zakharova: I have already answered this question and also explained how we feel about Andrey Kozyrev by reposting the statement by the Foreign Ministry staff on my social media accounts. You say that you do not use propaganda slogans. Did you notice that Mr Kozyrev wrote part of his tweet in English and part in Russian? Which colleagues was he talking to in English? Do you think we have anyone in our Foreign Ministry who does not understand Russian? This is propaganda. When someone writes half a tweet in English, he wants your attention, the Western mainstream media, and wants to get his message through to you, rather than talk to those whom he pretends to address. This is what propaganda is all about. You have an identical position. I will see you at the next briefing, since I have big plans on how to respond to your misinformation and fake news.

Question: You say that you are trying to protest civilians, but we have seen one civilian building hit after another, residential blocks, Freedom Square in Kharkov, local government buildings. And we have seen mounting numbers of civilian casualties. Are your soldiers just bad at targeting or you are actually lying about this?

Maria Zakharova: If you are going to ask questions in this manner, I will not speak to you at all. You may direct all your propaganda to your British politicians. Please control yourself here. If you can’t, then don’t pretend to be a journalist.

I have a degree in international journalism, and I know all about asking questions with an implanted position. Please note that the Defence Ministry said from the outset that the campaign is aimed at military infrastructure. As Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said today, unfortunately there are casualties both among servicemen and civilians. It happens, unfortunately. It is amazing that the question is coming from you, a representative of a country that has been carrying out massacres for years and decades in countries that share no borders with you, and it is totally unclear what you were doing there at all.

As for who lies, that’s the UK government, when it supported the campaign to take over Iraq. True, they admitted their lie later but have not apologised or been held accountable.

Question: The municipal building in Kharkov’s Freedom Square is not a military target. Yet it was clearly hit by a missile that destroyed the building. And we have seen any number of residential buildings, blocks of flats, homes, entire villages being wiped out by Russian fire. What I am saying, you know, whether you object to my tone or not, is this bad aiming, bad targeting by the Russian military, or are you being disingenuous with the claims that you are not targeting civilians?

Maria Zakharova: And there is the third option: you are saying “either…or”, but maybe these are fakes? Maybe Ukrainian fighters are claiming this is destruction caused by the Russian Armed Forces while they are the ones doing it, how about that?

Please give me specific materials. We will look at them and send them to the Defence Ministry, and they will provide their comments. But what you have to say, judging by how you said it, is pure propaganda.

Question: But why would the Ukrainian military target a municipal building in Kharkov? Is it capable of striking a building like that? Why would it strike its own residential areas?

Maria Zakharova: I told you – please give us the materials and we will comment on this specific case.

Question: Well, we have seen the video. Do you mean you have not seen it?

Maria Zakharova: I do not know what specifically you saw. Give us the materials and we will comment on them. I am not a military expert and do not comment on the course of the campaign.

I am ready, but if you are unable, I will give you the link to the Anti-fake section. Possibly, you will find that the video has already been debunked. In any case, send us the materials. We are prepared to look into them.

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Question: EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said he is sorry that the Western sanctions have failed to freeze all of Russia’s gold and foreign currency reserves. What will happen to Moscow-Brussels relations?

Maria Zakharova: Brussels pushed them into a corner, not just today, but in 2014. The architecture of our interaction with Brussels, from summit meetings to sectoral dialogues, was broken down. They chose to use sanctions against our country, and to wage a real anti-Russia campaign in all spheres under the cover of “strategic communication.” This was their tactic. For example, they forced candidate countries and partner states to express solidarity with anti-Russia statements and sanctions. In fact, this also took place in Ukraine. The policy in Brussels is “you are either with us, or against us.” They have not tried a harmonising approach but have chosen disengagement.

And ultimatums. What started the Maidan rallies in 2013 and 2014? In 2013, President Viktor Yanukovych was the EU’s best friend, the most promising leader who honoured his agreements. He attended summits and was met with applause. Nobody left the room when he was there. He was the best friend of the European Union.

Everything changed overnight. His EU friends “saw the light” when he refused to yield to their blackmail regarding the Association Agreement with the EU. Yanukovych postponed the decision until 2014 to compare the possibilities of alignment and integration with the EU to the post-Soviet integration processes in Eurasia. The next day, when he said that he would not sign the agreement immediately but would prefer to postpone it until next year, he became the target of attacks on all sides.

The same is happening to our country now. He was hissed at and called names. The EU did that. They stopped any talks with him and closed all doors on him, and after that the Maidan rallies began to pressure him into accepting the EU ultimatum and sign the agreement, which did not provide for aligning any processes but for making the choice exclusively in favour of the EU.

The Maidan rallies began with the militants and their Nazi ideology. The UK media had no interest in that. They didn’t ask how many civilian facilities the militants destroyed and how badly the civilian infrastructure was damaged. UK and US journalists walked between burning tires and Molotov cocktails as if in a rose garden, taking pictures of “public wrath.” What was that “public wrath” related to? It was related to one thing only: Brussels and Washington were staging an anti-constitutional coup with their own hands. This is how it began.

Brussels used far-fetched pretexts and open provocations to interfere in our domestic affairs and the internal affairs of countries who share close economic, financial, cultural, political and security ties with us.

During the subsequent years, the EU continued to disregard Russia’s legitimate interests and build up its political and economic pressure on our country. Our persistent calls to use its influence to encourage Kiev to implement the Minsk Package of Measures and stop infringing on the rights of Russian speakers came up against a wall of silence.

The EU policy towards Russia is still based on the Mogherini principles, which were adopted in 2016. They were anti-Russia from the very outset. But it was in 2016, or six years before February 2022. I invite you to read them. They are written in the Cold War language, just like Brussel’s new triad adopted in June 2021: “push back, contain, and engage.” This is what Josep Borrell proposed for our country. As expected, the principle of “selective engagement” has not gained traction. Nobody planned to use it. Instead, there was only pushback, which did nothing to promote stable and neighbourly relations in Europe.

In reply to our security guarantee proposals and personal letters from Sergey Lavrov to his counterparts in 37 countries, including EU member states, about compliance with the principle of indivisible security, we received a formal response dictated by the United States. Moreover, it was provided by Josep Borrell and Jens Stoltenberg, although the letters had not been addressed to them.

The EU took the next step on February 27, 2022, when it decided to send lethal weapons to Ukraine. By supplying weapons, the EU, which claims to be a diplomatic alliance, will extend the agony of the Kiev regime and increase the suffering of civilians. This makes one really wonder about the logic, real goals and soundness of their policy. This is being done through the Europe Peace Foundation. What kind of peace is this?

Brussels has demonstrated the worth of its claims about the rule of law in the EU. It ignored the eight criteria set out in the EU Common Position defining common rules governing control of exports of military technology and equipment. That document was adopted in 2008. The Foreign Ministry commented on this violation in a statement on the EU’s role in the developments in Ukraine, which was published on February 28, 2022.

This policy, which can be described as pouring oil on the flames, will not be left unanswered. As for blocking Russia’s gold and foreign currency reserves and other EU restrictions, we know that Western hypocrisy is coupled with greed for gain. This is a classic case. Any country across the globe that supports the “wrong” regime, does not behave as expected, and elects the “wrong” party or leader is immediately faced with blocked accounts, deposits and reserves, and even the detainment of people who have access to information regarding these accounts. Is this the first time this happened? No, it has always been like that.

Was there a military conflict in Venezuela? No, just the vagaries of politics. But its accounts have been blocked and Venezuela couldn’t have its own money. In principle, they have done no harm to anyone. I don’t imagine what fault could be found with them. Wrong regime? Wrong oil prices? Wrong oil supply routes? Wrong pocket where the money lands? Or lack of hegemony by the colonial machine, which is controlling many things but has somehow failed in Venezuela? The colonial boss has tried to spread its control through Latin America and the Caribbean basin, but some countries, for example, Cuba and Venezuela, managed to avoid it. They have their own resources and their own domestic and foreign policies. The world has seen this happen several times. But can you cite an example when you helped anyone just for a thank you? When you transferred money to Ukraine, it returned within a week to the accounts of Western banks or individuals or was used to buy weapons from the senders. It is a criminal game that has been going on for decades and even centuries.

The global markets have reacted with soaring energy prices and plummeting shares of Western companies, which have been badly hit by the severed business ties with Russia. Regrettably, ordinary EU citizens, who are being deceived and have been deceived for years, will pay for this. Brussels officials will not suffer yet, but they will when we adopt measures in reply to the sanctions. I can promise this with my whole heart.

I would also like to add that our relations with the EU will depend on the EU’s understanding of its own interests in stabilising the situation in Europe and correcting the security imbalances created by NATO’s eastward expansion. They will depend on the EU’s awareness of the need to demonstrate geopolitical independence and to launch a dialogue with Russia based on respect. We will take this into account and formulate our policy accordingly. We will see if they recognise the need for the demilitarisation and denazification of Ukraine and for new realities in the region. We will proceed from this.

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Question: The Council of Europe suspended Russia’s rights of representation. PACE President Tiny Kox said that Russia must meet its financial commitments to the Council of Europe. Is this just a question of money? Can you comment on that?

Maria Zakharova: We have already commented on the decision by the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe to suspend Russia’s rights of representation. This is the result of double standards and the lack of independence of the Strasbourg-based organisation at the same time.

There is no historical precedent for denying one of the Council of Europe member states the possibility of taking part in the work of its statutory bodies for carrying out a military operation. NATO’s aggression against Yugoslavia, or their invasion of Iraq and Libya, or Mikhail Saakashvili’s military venture in South Ossetia, or the eight years of genocide perpetrated by the Kiev regime against civilians in Donbass – nothing has elicited a radical response of this magnitude from Strasbourg. The reason is clear: this is something close to their heart, so close that they can’t even smell it. This “capital of human rights” did everything to turn a blind eye to the crimes of the Ukrainian nationalists. However, when our country finally decided to put an end to this outrage, the Council of Europe rushed to “punish” us in this strange and awkward manner. At the same time, they are also demanding that we honour our obligations, including our financial commitments, which is the most incredible part of this whole story.

This is unacceptable. We do hope that Strasbourg scratches its head, at least a little bit. If they do, they will understand the extent to which its decision will hurt the Council of Europe. I will not announce a final decision; let’s wait for their response. However, we have several options on the table in terms of responding to these steps.

We are also aware of the statements by Tiny Kox, the President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. I will not challenge his statements from this rostrum. Engaging in an indirect debate with him is not my intention. All I want to do is point out to PACE leadership, just as a historical reminder, that one of the slogans preceding the United States’ War of Independence was “no taxation without representation.”

There have been other situations in the history of relations between Russia and the Council of Europe similar to the one we have today. The most recent example is 2014. When Crimea reunited with Russia, the Parliamentary Assembly of this organisation was hysterical. It suspended the voting rights of the Russian delegation and prevented it from sitting in its governing bodies or observing elections. In response, our country stopped paying its membership fees. Since Russia is one of the biggest contributors to the budget of this organisation and accounts for about 10 percent of its revenue, this was quite a heavy blow for the Council of Europe. Within a year, the organisation changed its mind and restored the Russian parliamentary delegation’s rights.

We strongly believe that the obligation for a state to pay contributions to the budget of the Council of Europe arises from the possibility to fully participate in its activities. By taking the decision to suspend Russia’s rights, the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe must understand the consequences. Back in 2014, we had the same conversation about money, contributions and how they correlate with enjoying our full rights. Our representatives discussed this with the representatives of the Council of Europe in every detail for hours, days and even months. Therefore, by deciding to suspend Russia’s rights of representation, the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe must understand the consequences, including in financial, administrative, and legal terms.

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Question: Are there any international agencies in which Russia’s membership may be suspended or eliminated altogether?

Maria Zakharova: I don’t know. I cannot answer this question now. We did not have such plans. This was invented long ago. I’m referring to the UN Security Council and other agencies. We are told we are not eligible for membership in one agency because we are too big, and cannot enter another one because our economy is too small. It has been like this for decades. Instead of resolving issues together, working and building relations we have to face confrontation all the time with different groups of countries. They are always displeased with something. It is a classic already.

There was never a different approach. Everything went well only with Andrey Kozyrev. When he said Russia had no national interests, everyone applauded him, everyone agreed with him. But we must make a choice: either we have national interests and not everyone will applaud us, or we don’t have them. As soon as we declare this and agree to everything that is being imposed on us, and that glaringly contradicts the essence of our history, state and culture, we will receive thunderous applause. They will praise us. We will be extolled to the skies. We will be awarded with medals not for some achievements but just for the heck of it. We have already been through all this. We tried to trust them and understood that this was not the way to go. This happened many times. We tried to assert our right to exist at all kinds of talks. We are seeing the result: talks have stopped on all fronts. Apparently, talks about our existence have never been part of the West’s plans. Did this start in the absence of the Cold War and bloc confrontation? No, this may have gone on for centuries. Read letters by Ivan the Terrible to his British partners. Like we are saying now he said then that they had not fulfilled any of their commitments on trade, nor kept a single promise. Each time the situation follows the same scenario.  We do all we can, we are patient, we persuade, we invite them to the negotiating table, we talk and we find compromise. In some cases, we modify our positions, making concessions or suggesting exchanges. But then they come up with a provocation or present us with the terms that do not leave us a choice, considering these terms threaten our existence.

What are security guarantees? This issue boils down to our existence. Maybe it’s worth following Britain’s example − a preventive strike and interference in the internal affairs of those states that do not accommodate UK economic interests. People simply “disappear” both inside and outside Britain. They disappear as if they never existed. What happened with White Helmet member James Le Mesurier that carried out orders? What about the Skripals? Have they been found? No. Are they alive? Where are they? Who has seen them? Nobody has seen them. Nobody knows anything. They performed the role assigned to them and disappeared from the face of the Earth. Scotland Yard has been investigating this case for many years. So what? According to British logic, this is unimportant: No body, no case. Millions of people were killed in Iraq. They don’t care about anything at all. Not a single international institution replied. Everything is blocked. Everybody is silent. All they are saying is that they were doing all they could to bring democracy to the region. But the region is bad and democracy didn’t take hold. They crippled the Middle East and North Africa. What hadn’t they done there? They divided the whole of Africa with a ruler when they had to give up colonies, or else they would have never given them up.

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Question: Referring to a high-ranking Pentagon official, Politico reported that the US Defence Department expressed its desire to establish a communication channel with Russia against the backdrop of the situation in Ukraine. It may be patterned after a model the sides established in 2015 for settling the situation in Syria. Has Moscow received this proposal from Washington? Will it help establish a constructive dialogue between the sides?

Maria Zakharova:  And why are you interested? Don’t you want to connect to these channels. This is not an issue for the Foreign Ministry. This as a leak from the other side, so ask it. We have never rejected contacts, all the more so when other countries request them.

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Question: Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan paid a two-day visit to Moscow last week and met with Russian President Vladimir Putin. During their meeting, they discussed the Pakistan Stream pipeline project and expansion of trade. How does Russia assess working relations with Pakistan after this visit? What did they manage to agree on?

Maria Zakharova: The visit you are talking about took place on February 23-24. It was the first visit by a Pakistani head of government to Russia in a bilateral format in 23 years. It gave a good impetus to the fast-growing Russian-Pakistani ties. Moscow and Islamabad showed determination to build up multifaceted cooperation even amid the tense international situation.

The Ukraine discussion was high on the meeting agenda. The Pakistani Prime Minister accepted with understanding our argument about the circumstances that have forced Russia to take this stance with our Western partners regarding the situation in Ukraine, security guarantees, Kiev’s genocide against millions of people living in Donbass, manifestations of neo-Nazi ideology and so on.

The leaders agreed to expand trade and economic cooperation with a focus on energy. They expressed mutual interest in signing commercial documents on the flagship project, the Pakistan Stream gas pipeline, in the near future. This will greenlight its practical implementation. Both parties agreed there are good prospects for LNG supplies to Pakistan and modernisation of Pakistani railways.

They also agreed to tighten cooperation in the fight against terrorism and the drug threat, taking into account the growing activity of a number of terrorist groups, primarily ISIS and Al-Qaeda in South Asia. They decided to continue the regular Friendship exercises, the Arabian Monsoon naval exercises, and contacts at the Joint Working Group on Counter Terrorism.

The two countries’ leaders expressed a unanimous opinion on the need to stabilise Afghanistan by forming an inclusive government, taking into account the interests of all ethnic and political groups, as well as assisting that country in order to avoid a humanitarian catastrophe. They agreed to maintain cooperation at specialised international and regional platforms.

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Question: President of Ukraine Vladimir Zelensky signed an executive order introducing temporary visa-free regulations for foreign nationals who will travel to Ukraine to fight the Russian army. Western countries support Ukrainians in every possible way, and are saying they must protect their sovereignty, while at the same time, when young people in Kashmir raise their voices for their rights and freedom, Europe calls them terrorists. What can you say about Europe’s double standards?

Maria Zakharova: You are aware of our position with regard to the Kashmir issue. It remains unchanged. We consistently advocate resolving the existing differences between Islamabad and New Delhi by political and diplomatic means on a bilateral basis in accordance with the provisions of the 1972 Simla Agreement and the 1999 Lahore Declaration.

Western duplicity is nothing new and shows absolutely in all matters. At some point, they claimed that the idea of militants from other countries participating in an armed conflict is unacceptable for them, but we have seen vast numbers of examples where they were outraged by the fact that Russian nationals, and maybe not only them, were allegedly participating in the conflict. They said it was unacceptable. Today, the Kiev regime said that Europe, its Euro-Atlantic structures, promised to send 16,000 volunteers to Ukraine. Of course, they will be armed volunteers. You know what the consequences will be. You represent a region that has become hostage to this colonial line of thinking. When the British were leaving it, they shaped the situation so as to keep these countries hostage to this imperial thinking. I can say right away that if the NATO countries, the European Union and the United States send mercenaries there, then in a very short time these mercenaries will return to them. Only they will be totally different people then. They will have tasted blood by then. Now, once again I will revisit the 1990s, to which my British colleague sent me with his question today. They were sending militants and terrorists to the North Caucasus via the Middle East, Central Asia, directly via Europe, NATO countries, and the Mediterranean. We are aware of it. We are aware that numerous militants were sent there and that they gave them weapons. We are aware of other developments and the use of illegal drugs to control these people. What happened next? When Russia was dealing with terrorists on its own territory with jeers coming from the West, all the West was thinking about was how to save the lives of terrorists. They criticised us and told us we had no right to do it. They told us it was “a humanitarian disaster.” Our region was aflame and terrorist attacks were perpetrated all over the country, which for them was a humanitarian disaster. God forbid we dare touch terrorist cells in the North Caucasus which were financed by the West. When our internal counterterrorism operation began to bring about effective results, and this terrorist scum was pressed against the hills and mountains, they started fleeing to these very countries, primarily, northern Europe, Britain, and Scandinavia. You know what? Several years later, in the mid-2010s, the same countries that hosted terrorists from the North Caucasus officially contacted us asking what to do now. You know the way they think better than us. They were asking for advice and help of our specialists. They were ready to conduct joint operations. They even wanted us to take them away, since they had no idea of what to do with them. They provided shelter to many radicals under the guise of refugees and settled them in compact areas. Five to six years later, they were horrified by what was happening there and ran to us asking to help and save them, which we did.

It will play out the same way now. Look, 3,000 Iraqi migrants, people with money who could afford a plane ticket, trained professionals who had savings, arrived at the Belarusian-Polish border in search of a better chance to fulfil their potential. They were neither fundamentalists, nor terrorists. They had all kinds of papers. They had officially issued entry documents, they bought tickets and responded to the “call” of the European Union (which has been encouraging them to look for a better life for many years) and were on their way to Berlin. Did you see how it ended? They were afraid even of these 3,000 people. They gassed them, blinded and deafened them by light and sound, and did everything to prevent children, women and civilians from entering the EU. Why? Just because Europe is already suffocating from the problem posed by migrants from the Middle East.

The Iraqis who came to Belarus to the EU borders, the refugees who have for decades been coming from the Middle East through the Mediterranean, Italy and Greece are the result of the experiment conducted by the West (the United States, Britain and NATO countries) on these regions.

Another experiment they are planning to conduct will have a bloody ending for them. They are handing out weapons to militants and ordinary people who have never fought under the banner that it is supposedly necessary to fight back the aggression and to defend themselves.  This is being said by the Kiev regime, which simply formulated the ideology of aggression throughout the country. This experiment won’t end just like that. Europe, which is about to supply weapons and armed militants to them, will get them back just as they got the White Helmets back. Remember, they controlled them from London. Remember the Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights? Where is it headquartered? London. It controlled the White Helmets movement. The White Helmets in Syria received instructions from London, Brussels and the United States from there. And they received money, too, which is an established fact.

Under the guise of humanitarian organisations, they did all kinds of things there. When this outrage was over (also thanks to the efforts of the Russian Armed Forces), the White Helmets asked their sponsors (who promised to take them to their respective countries) to deliver on their promise, because no one needed them in Syria. They knew they would be killed there, just like James Le Mesurier “accidentally” died there. And that is the end of it. What did the West do to them? It tried to send them to Jordan or other countries. Why? Because they know who they are getting. The only difference is that the Middle East is separated from Europe geographically. These are different continents.

Here we share the same continent. Thanks to these countries’ policies, the borders with Ukraine are open. Let them not say later that these armed militants who will go back (and they will) to these countries have become an unpleasant “surprise” for them. We warned them.

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Question: What can Russia do or has already done to set off the effect of the information war that is being zealously waged against it?

Maria Zakharova: There are some natural disasters that we can foresee and take measures to protect ourselves from. And there are those that all we can do is wait for them to be over and try to survive. The problem is not with us or with our position. The information war unleashed by the West is fatal to it. They are killing their media and the ability of their countries and people for critical thought. They are killing democracy because if it is based on the media of propaganda and does not allow for opinions, it is not a democracy and it cannot be lasting.

The Western world has opted for this type of [political] setup – one without an alternative – as its priority. They ruled out the possibility of making adjustments to democracy or gaining a new perspective on it.  Pure democracy as it is. If they black out media, block internet platforms, engage in information manipulation and give money to support chosen media outlets in other countries, they can forget about democracy. If there is no alternative to their political system – for decades, people have been taught to give their lives for democracy – everything is doomed.

I do not want to assert this but we are seeing manifestations of these phenomena. We will continue to provide information, refute fake news and respond, whenever we have an opportunity to protect ourselves and our media with retaliatory measures. We will draw yet another conclusion. We will do everything we can. The orgy going on right now must scare those who started it.

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Question: How can the deteriorating relations between Russia, and the United States and some European countries affect cooperation in bringing the situation in Afghanistan back to normal?

Maria Zakharova: We believe the existing bilateral and multilateral cooperation formats have proved their worth. Take, for example, the expanded troika format: Russia, China, the United States and Pakistan. Several European players expressed an interest in joining these efforts. Another meeting in this format is scheduled for March 2022. It is about regional security, among other matters. Considering the existing opportunities for the dissemination of information and the speed at which all processes are evolving, we are now putting a broader interpretation on the term “region”.

We noted that under various pretexts, the United States can skip some meetings of the expanded troika, the way it happened in Kabul and Moscow last year. However, this does not have a significant effect on the functioning of this mechanism.

Currently, given the difficult humanitarian situation in Afghanistan, the focus of this group’s efforts has shifted to assisting the post-conflict recovery of that country. This testifies yet again to the importance and relevance of this format.

In light of the recent events, we are prepared for any scenarios of our cooperation with the West on Afghanistan. At the same time, no matter what decisions the Americans and Europeans might take regarding this work in the future, it is important not to allow them to shed the responsibility for the deplorable state of affairs in Afghanistan, which is the result of the 20-year military campaign conducted by the United States and its allies in the country.

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Question: Iceland has closed its airspace for Russia and is denying entry visas for Russians. There is a danger of attack on the Russian Embassy in Reykjavík. Iceland’s government made the Atlantic Cargo aircraft available for transporting lethal weapons to Ukraine. Should Iceland expect Russia to retaliate?

Maria Zakharova: Your question contains so much that I can answer using the same words.

It does indeed contradict the obligations assumed by individual countries as well as joint obligations. It runs counter to the objectives declared by the Western community, specifically Iceland, on the need to achieve peace in Ukraine. What they are doing will increase the number of casualties in Ukraine and create a threat to the European continent because those weapons will get into the hands of neo-Nazi fighters.

How will we react? The Russian leadership has already spoken about it. I do not represent the Defence Ministry. I cannot give comments. This is beyond my competence. I am not involved in these matters. I can speak on the subjects within the scope of the Foreign Ministry’s activities. We warned them. The response will be worked out.

All this is caused by a profound misunderstanding of the situation on the ground. Since the beginning of the armed conflict in Donbass in 2014, we never saw any concern in Iceland regarding the oppression, loss of life and hostilities there – what the Kiev regime was doing. How can you care about one part of Ukraine and not care about another? It shows your lack of understanding of what is going on.

Why does every country have to know everything? It doesn’t have to know. It’s all right if a country is not a permanent member of the UN Security Council (or is not a member of major international associations that play a decisive role), distances itself from the public opinion of what is happening, observes from the sidelines even if it concerns something of crucial importance for the security of a region on its continent. It is strange not to notice, but yes, there are countries like that. For certain reasons they were not involved, were unaware. Possibly, they had no experts. They did not even make any attempts to figure things out for themselves. In that case they should continue to stick to this position.

Since for eight years you didn’t think it was important to find out why people were dying there, then you shouldn’t wake up now. Go on sleeping. And if you’ve decided to wake up now, then you should look at some materials. We have provided enough of them. Study them. You cannot blindly follow someone else’s course and create the feeling of collective condemnation based on one country’s information on an issue that you have no understanding of because it never had any importance for you.

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Question: Could you specify what Russia means by the term “denazification”? You have repeatedly referred to the Ukrainian leaders as Nazis and a “nationalist regime.” What does “denazification” mean in this context? Is it changing who is in power or renouncing a kind of rhetoric?

Maria Zakharova: People who profess Nazi logic may be described in theoretical or in practical terms. Much has been written about them in theory.

In practical terms: They took part in combat units that are distinguished by the logos of battalions from World War II or the Great Patriotic War as we call it here. People who collaborated with the Third Reich, including on occupied territories, were turned into national heroes. An atmosphere was created that made it impossible for people of different ethnic origins and religious beliefs to coexist, as they were persecuted for these characteristics. Many of them were okay on their own but the problem emerged in combination. This was not even considered abnormal or an excess. It was the policy of the state. That’s how it was in everyday life.

People with barbaric logic may be found in any society. Like the vandals who desecrate monuments (either out of stupidity or conviction). They are denounced, persecuted and punished. They are condemned for what they do by society in terms of public morality and also by the state in terms of law. There are laws against such behaviour. Public opinion is strongly against this. The same position is held by different government institutions, executive and legislative authorities and civil society. This issue is subject to regulation. Any individual or collective action by neo-Nazis is stopped. When they desecrate a monument, local communities, municipalities and deputies pay close attention. They restore the monument while law enforcement finds the criminals and punishes them. Children are told that this is not the way to go, and newspapers write that it is an isolated example that brings shame on society.

In Ukraine the picture is the reverse. These are not isolated examples. There are thousands of them. They are not criticised in public. Sometimes, an approach based on historical reconciliation is taken. Why don’t they sit at the same table and make friends? (The veterans who fought against the Nazis and those who were on the side of the Galicia division.) There is an all-or-nothing policy – either ban everything (both the red star and Nazi logos) or allow everything. How come? This is like making peace between Hannibal and his victim. Why not put them in the same room? After all, they are both homo sapiens and will find a common language. Let’s go away and see whether one of them will eat the other. This is the same logic. The ground was prepared at government level for not putting a stop to it. These nationalist movements were a convenient instrument for achieving their political aims.

President of Russia Vladimir Putin said what to do about all this on February 24 of this year. Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and other Russian officials explained in detail the essence of denazification as one of the goals of the special military operation in Ukraine. Its goal is to eradicate Nazism and fascism that made a comeback in Ukraine over seven decades after World War II. They were there. We know. See the film “Ordinary Fascism.”  In the past, if this existed, it was driven into a corner or completely rooted out. Whatever some people had in their minds was pushed far back without the possibility of it spilling out. This was Soviet policy towards fascism – zero tolerance, to use the current expression. There was no tolerance of any neo-Nazi manifestations. It was inconceivable.

But they supported all the collaborators and accomplices like the grandfather of Chrystia Freeland, who published a Nazi journal in Poland. He was given a job, food and accommodation. They periodically used him for their internal purposes and later in the anti-Soviet and anti-Russian struggle.

Despite our detailed explanations, some Western media are trying to distort the meaning of denazification. The day before yesterday, one French television channel interpreted denazification as the intention to fragment, divide and destroy the Ukrainian nation. They took the word “Nazism” at the root of the word and interpreted it to mean a nationality, a nation. This is the level of Western propaganda. A sophisticated distortion. This substitution of “Nazism” for “nation” is highly indicative of Western propagandists. For the past eight years, they either shut their eyes to what was happening or openly encouraged Nazi trends in Ukraine, calling them a “movement for liberation” or a manifestation of “cultural identity.” True, this “cultural identity” emerged there on such a scale during World War II. Previously, if it existed it was manifest in civil confrontation and internal conflicts, including political intolerance. The misanthropic logic never existed. People were fighting, there was a civil war but it was about different classes and social positions. It had nothing to do with one nation’s superiority over others and, as a consequence, not having equal rights.

We would like to point out that since 2014, when the national radicals took power in the country after the unconstitutional coup d’etat, they began to glorify those who collaborated with Nazi Germany. These were members of the Organisation of Ukrainian Nationalists and the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (OUN-UPA), which openly killed Russians, Poles, Jews, Gypsies, people of other ethnicities and “objectionable” Ukrainians during World War II.

During the past eight years, the atrocities of the OUN-UPA fighters, who killed thousands of civilians, were presented as “the struggle for freedom.” Streets and stadiums were named in honour of Hitler’s accomplices – Bandera and Shukhevich. We talked about this issue almost every day. Nazi formations – the Right Sector, S14, Trizub, Azov, Donbass and Aidar, to name a few, were operating in the open in Ukraine. Torchlight processions were held. A torchlight procession is not a carnival with flashlights. It is a Nazi-oriented march with relevant symbols, greetings and stylistic features. However, not everyone in Europe realises this. Some of those units were incorporated in the Ukrainian armed forces and sent to Donbass as a combat cell. They looted, raped and killed. They are responsible for civilian deaths.

Denazification is a historical term. We didn’t invent it. I will cite several examples to show that the world already faced it in the past so that Western journalists stop saying they hear this for the first time. Don’t mix things up. Take denazification of Germany and Austria after World War II. After the war, the victorious Allied powers established the Allied Control Council. One of the goals of Germany’s occupation by these powers, by which the council was to be guided, was “to destroy the National Socialist Party and its affiliated and supervised organisations, to dissolve all Nazi institutions, to ensure that they are not revived in any form, and to prevent all Nazi and militarist activity or propaganda.” (Report about the tripartite Berlin/Potsdam Conference, August 2, 1945, item 3 of section A – Political Principles of Section 3 on Germany). To reach these objectives, the Council adopted Law No. 10 and Law No. 4, which determined a number of individuals subject to denazification and provided for the creation of special judicial bodies to review their cases.

The Council issued Directive No. 38 “Arrest and Punishment of War Criminals, Nazis, and Militarists and the Internment, Control, and Surveillance of Potentially Dangerous Germans.”

Article 139 of the Fundamental Law of Germany provides for the continuation of legal instructions on denazification.

Austria also has a legal base for it. Article 12 of the State Treaty for the Re-Establishment of an Independent and Democratic Austria of May 15, 1955 prohibits former members of Nazi organisations from serving in the Austrian armed forces. In addition, the treaty provides for the return of property of Austrian nationals, including property that had been forcibly removed from the Austrian territory to Germany after 1938, to its owners but makes a reservation: “This provision shall not apply to the property of war criminals or persons who have been subjected to the penalties of denazification measures… (Article 23).

This is just a brief review of historical examples. Everything must be formalised at the legal level.

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Question: In view of unprecedented sanctions and Russia’s isolation which, among other things, prevented Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov from participating in the UN events in Geneva, does Moscow consider withdrawing or suspending its participation in certain international structures? I am interested, in particular, in Russia’s activities in the OSCE, which you repeatedly criticised in the preceding months and weeks.

Maria Zakharova: I have already spoken about that. We proceed from the fact that some Western ideologists have long been engaged in this work. We are monitoring it.

As of yet Russia is not considering withdrawing from or suspending its engagement with the OSCE. We can do that any time. However, our patience has its limits.

As you may know, in the 1970s Moscow stood at the origins of the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe, a forerunner of this major regional organisation meant to become a venue for discussing and taking collective consensus decision on security issues in the Euro-Atlantic. It hurts to see what the OSCE has turned into. I recall, when I was at university, we studied what the OSCE is and the principles it stands for. What I have faced in practice, especially in the past years, is worlds different. The principles have been perverted to the core. It is impossible to believe that the Organisation was founded on certain principles which have been so utterly corrupted by now.

The West has usurped the management of the OSCE bodies since the 1990s so as to interfere in the internal affairs of sovereign states and impose ultra-liberal concepts and values which are alien to many countries. The Western countries signed OSCE obligations while intending, as we know now, to never follow up on them. The notorious “rules-based order” obligations are meant only for the former socialist countries whereas “developed democracies” are above the law. In other words, some countries owe everything to everyone whereas the latter have only rights and can do whatever they see fit.

The turning point in understanding all of this did not occur yesterday. You have rightly noted that we have been speaking a great deal about it recently, too. If someone has enough patience to go over past events, they will realise that we have been speaking about it for a long time now. In 1999, NATO violated all international norms and OSCE principles when it bombed Yugoslavia and tried to rip Kosovo from it. They were doing it for many years. Just in case, when they need to trample universal norms, the West always has a tested tool which we first qualified as double standards and now they themselves called it “constructive uncertainty.” When a clear-cut wording can be turned into a murky passage which doesn’t entail (from their point of view) any commitments, that’s what they obviously think the constructive uncertainty is. Even though everything is written on paper and all the principles are clearly laid out.

OSCE members have been after the Russian media outlets in the past years and especially the past months, making them experience all the beauty of the Western interpretation of “liberalism.” Many media outlets had Westerners among their staff who worked there as equals and expressed views not as NATO countries’ citizens but as journalists. And not even expressed a position but just did their job.

As a result, the OSCE failed to take advantage of the historic opportunity to strengthen its international standing by assisting in the settlement of the intra-Ukrainian crisis. Instead, the Western OSCE members used the Vienna-based organisation to cover and justify Kiev’s reluctance to stop the genocide in Donbass by implementing their commitments under the Minsk Package of Measures through a dialogue with Donetsk and Lugansk. The OSCE Special Monitoring Mission throughout its almost eight-year-long operation in Ukraine failed to report true and impartial information to the world community about the victims and destruction caused by the Ukrainian Army’s and nationalist battalions’ punitive operation against civilians in the DPR and LPR, not to mention of the way they turned a blind eye to gross human rights violations across entire Ukraine. Even the little that they uttered would have been enough to unblock the negotiating process between Kiev, Donetsk and Lugansk. Yet they did not do it. They did not use any of the opportunities. They kept buzzing, clamouring and booing whenever Russian representatives tried to make them understand the severity of the situation. The Westerners preferred hostile rhetoric and promoting confrontational bloc-based approaches rather than meaningful in-depth discussions.

Such lopsided pan-European cooperation is sinking into oblivion. This does not mean the OSCE must be buried. We need a forum for equitable and mutually respectful dialogue and cooperation. When the collective West gets over its fits of Russophobia, we will be ready to jointly restore interaction in the Organisation. But we will not do that on the principles that discriminate against Russia and other nations “to the east of Vienna.” A great deal of work lies ahead to revive the true Helsinki Spirit for the OSCE to operate for the benefit of all its member-states without exception.

This will become possible when all countries whose leaders signed the documents of the 1999 Istanbul and 2010 Astana summits are guided by the principle of equal and indivisible security not just in word but in deed, and unconditionally implement their commitment not to enhance their own security at the expense of others’ security. We will be waiting for the West to sober up from the anti-Russia frenzy.

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Question: An Indian citizen died in Kharkov. India wants to have safe corridors for its students. Will Russia provide them?

Maria Zakharova:  The responsibility of establishing humanitarian corridors for the evacuation of Indian nationals in Ukraine has been assigned to our specialised agencies, which are working on this issue. The question about Indian nationals was discussed during the contact between the two countries’ leaders. All information on this issue is provided in the comment posted on the Kremlin’s website.

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Question: What do you think about the Indian approach to the current developments? Did the Prime Minister of India call for dialogue?

Maria Zakharova: India and its leadership have a weighted, wise and far-sighted position on a number of issues, including a wide range of global and regional issues. That is typical of the Indian leadership. They apply this method (I mean the method of a weighted and unbiased approach) in general to the international agenda. It does not mean that there are no problems or differences with other countries. Yet, speaking in general, this is a weighted and far-sighted position, including on the situation in Ukraine.

The Indian leadership has drawn Russia’s attention to the importance of conducting an honest dialogue, which could lead to a compromise in this situation. As for us, we are seeking honesty in the negotiation process on all tracks, not only regarding Ukraine, but we also demand the same attitude from NATO.

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Question: They say that the advocates of the so-called European values, those Ukrainian transgender women who registered as men and want to leave Ukraine now are not allowed to do so, because men are not allowed to leave and vice versa, those men who changed their gender can leave.

Please accept most heartfelt greetings from your fellow compatriots on the occasion of the coming first spring holyday, International Women’s Day. We are happy that such smart, kind and beautiful women as those working at the Foreign Ministry and agencies abroad are with us. You are the best.

Maria Zakharova: Thank you very much. Having such support and seeing such genuine interest in international affairs gives me confidence. I am always in favour of impartiality and professionalism. I think that these qualities and, of course, commitment to the truth have always been key for overcoming even the most complicated situations in life. Life cannot give us a cloudless sky every day. We face various challenges as people, nations and countries. That’s life. They happen and pass differently, but the difference is how people act in the situation, how decently they behave, think beyond their own current emotions, how much they think about others and work and act for the benefit of other people. This is one of the main secrets and objectives in life; in overcoming obstacles and achieving the results at the level where you can do your best.

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Question: How does Russia regard the refusal by Turkey and Georgia to take part in the Western anti-Russia sanctions?

Maria Zakharova: The Western anti-Russia sanctions are illegitimate and adopted without the necessary approvals. However, it is not so much because of the procedure. The sanctions are part of a bigger plan that they did not conceal. These sanctions are unlawful. Sometimes the principle is more important than the damage inflicted by its application. This happens when you stand up for the truth, when you work for the benefit of the most important principles of humankind’s existence. But when the sanctions are illegitimate under the law and hypocritical in essence, when the reason for imposing them is to destroy something and to save something else, how can it be tolerated that they do harm even to those who impose them. This is absurd, foolish and short-sighted, let alone indecent. Unfortunately, this term has been lost by many in international affairs. However, behaviour should at least try to follow logic somehow.

I hope that I have answered all your questions.

Latest Comments from the Russian MFA

March 02, 2022


Collated and posted by Amarynth

These are short-form comments as the Russian governmental sites are still under attack. It is a collection of the latest comments from the Russian Foreign Affairs office.

 FM Sergey Lavrov’s remarks at the high-level segment of the Conference on Disarmament, March 1, 2022

 Today, the dangers that the Zelensky regime poses to neighbouring countries and international security in general have increased significantly after the Kiev authorities started dangerous games involving plans to obtain their own nuclear weapons.

Rest assured that as a responsible member of the international community Russia is committed to its non-proliferation pledge, and is taking every necessary measure to prevent the emergence of nuclear weapons and related technology in Ukraine.

Foreign Ministry statement on the EU’s role in the developments in Ukraine

 For many years, the European Union, posing as a peacemaker, lavishly financed the Kiev regime, which came to power in an anti-constitutional coup. The EU stood in silence while the population of Donbass was being exterminated and the Russian language was being strangled in Ukraine. It disregarded our endless calls to take notice of the predominance of Nazis in the Ukrainian authorities, and the socioeconomic blockade and murder of innocent civilians in the southeast of Ukraine. The EU conditioned its future relations with Russia on the implementation of the Minsk Package of Measures but has done nothing to encourage Kiev to start implementing its main provisions. At the same time, the EU gave Kiev money and visa-free travel and extended anti-Russia sanctions under far-fetched pretexts. The EU took part in Kiev’s performances, which put in question the territorial integrity of the Russian Federation.

Masks have now come off. The February 27 decision to send lethal weapons to the Ukrainian militarists is self-exposing. It has marked the end of Euro-integration as a “pacifist” project allegedly launched to reconcile European nations after WWII. The EU has irrevocably taken the side of the Kiev regime, which waged a policy of genocide against part of its own population.

Unbeknownst to themselves, the Brussels officials started using Orwell’s newspeak. They have announced the intention to “invest” in the war launched in Ukraine in 2014 through a mechanism with a self-explanatory name, the Europe Peace Foundation. The EU leadership unashamedly describes missiles, small arms, munitions and even combat aircraft as “defensive” systems.


The EU citizens and agencies involved in the delivery of lethal weapons, fuel and lubricants to the Ukrainian Armed Forces will be held responsible for any consequences of these actions during the ongoing special military operation. They should be aware of the severity of these consequences.

Another myth that has been exposed is the EU’s claim that its unilateral restrictions, which are incompatible with international law, are not directed against the Russian people. The Brussels officials, who only recently posed as a “strategic partner” of Russia, are saying openly that they intend to inflict the maximum possible damage on Russia, hit its weak spots, batter the Russian economy and “suppress Russia’s economic growth.”

 We are sure that this is not going to work. We will provide a tough response to the EU’s actions. Russia will continue to ensure the implementation of its vital national interests, notwithstanding the sanctions or threats of sanctions. The Western countries should wake up to the fact that the days of their undivided rule in the global economy are long gone.

Maria #Zakharova:

The #EuropeanUnion has not gone as far as barring the Foreign Minister of Russia Sergey Lavrov from travelling as a diplomat; there can be exemptions from EU sanctions. This is what the head of EU diplomacy, Josep Borrell, said on Monday in response to a question from a journalist on whether the EU sanctions prevent the Russian Minister from travelling to Geneva.

 But they did go too far. They are lying and scrambling to get away with it.

Russia prepared two routes which Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and his delegation could take to attend meetings of the Conference on Disarmament and the UN Human Rights Council at the United Nations Office at Geneva.

 #Poland and #Estonia denied them passage, and the UN Secretariat knew this. Both countries cited EU sanctions.

Mr Borrell, what betrays the doublespeak in your position is that when Sergey Lavrov asked countries in their national capacity to express their positions on security matters, which are critical to us, you answered for all EU member states, although no one asked you or the EU as an organisation to do so. You even provided a lengthy explanation to demonstrate that the EU has a “collective position” based on the majority opinion.

But when the same countries denied the delegation passage for attending UN events in Geneva on the basis of the EU restrictions that you have announced, you said that it is their sovereign right 

Doublespeak from a doublespeaker.

 Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova’s comment on the expulsion of diplomats from Russia’s Permanent Mission to the UN

 We regard the expulsion of 12 diplomats from the Russian Permanent Mission in New York as a deliberate and cynical escalation in Russia-US relations provoked by Washington in violation of US obligations under the corresponding agreement with the host country.

The Biden administration is continuing a policy that seeks not only to completely destroy the foundations of interstate relations, but also to undermine the central role of the #UN in an attempt to impose the notorious “rules-based order” dictated by the United States and its satellites. The purpose of the unfolding developments and the timing of this utterly hostile action are clear to us and are supposed to increase pressure, blackmail and intimidation in order to weaken our position and deprive us of the opportunity to be fully functional on the UN platform.

 Dirty tricks by the Americans do not come as news to anyone. Losing again and again on the diplomatic field, #Washington seeks revenge by abusing its position as the country on whose territory the UN headquarters happens to be located.

In view of what has occurred, there can be no more place for excuses and delays in immediately launching an official arbitration procedure between the United Nations and the United States in connection with their flagrant violations of the United Nations Headquarters Agreement. We remind the UN Secretary General of this again.

 With regard to the expulsion of Russian diplomats, it will not remain without a proper response which will not be necessarily symmetrical. Our advice to decision-makers in Washington is to think about the consequences of their destructive policy.

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