Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov commented on an event on Saturday as he attacked Western sanctions on Russian interests.
“As for the concept behind the use of coercive measures, the West is making it clear that it does not want to try to change the policy of the Russian Federation … they want to change the regime, practically no one denies it,” Lavrov said in a meeting of a foreign and domestic policy council in Moscow.
His words reflect the deterioration of his government’s relations with the United States and many European nations due to the conflict in Ukraine. Western powers accuse Russia of sending troops and equipment to help separatists in eastern Ukraine in their fight against Ukrainian government forces.
Moscow has expressed moral support for the rebels and sent aid convoys to the region, but has repeatedly denied military involvement.
‘A new low in relationS.‘
Lavrov’s comments on Saturday represent “a new low in relations,” according to Russian expert Ben Judah.
“Not since 1984 has a Russian foreign minister described ties with the West and his plans for” regime change “in such obscure terms,” Judah, the author of a book on Russia under President Vladimir, wrote on Twitter. Putin.
Putin has been in power in Russia, both as prime minister and president, for the past 15 years.
Lavrov’s words seem to follow Putin’s comments earlier this week that the West, particularly the United States, is still striving to “subjugate” Russia.
Biden slams “Russian aggression”
Western officials, meanwhile, continued to criticize Russia’s interference in Ukraine.
US Vice President Joe Biden, visiting Kiev on Friday, said he discussed “the threat to Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity represented by Russian aggression” in his conversations with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko.
Biden made it clear on Friday that the takeover of Crimea remains a backbone in U.S. relations with Russia.
“Let me say as clearly and categorically as possible, America does not and will not recognize the Russian occupation and the attempted annexation of Crimea,” Biden said. “We will not do it, we will not do it and we insist that others do not accept this illegal annexation.”