Having nuclear weapons protects Russia from threats to its security, said Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.
“Having nuclear weapons today is the only possible response to some significant external threats to national security. Events in and around Ukraine have confirmed the validity of our concerns,” Sergei Lavrov said in an interview with The International Affairs magazine (Russian Foreign Ministry magazine covering a wide range of topics relating to international politics, diplomacy and global security), published on the Russian Ministry’s website on Saturday Foreign Affairs.
Lavrov stressed that Moscow’s nuclear deterrence policy is strictly defensive and aims to guarantee sovereignty and territorial integrity and prevent any aggression against Russia and its allies.
The United States and NATO countries risk being involved in a direct armed confrontation between nuclear powers, “we believe that this scenario can and must be avoided”, he added.
The head of Russian diplomacy hammered that Moscow is “fully convinced” that a nuclear war is “unacceptable” and that “there can be no winners in such a war, which must therefore never take place”.
Accusing the West of wanting to “get rid” of a “serious geopolitical rival”, Sergey Lavrov said that Washington and Brussels had “unleashed a hybrid war against us”.
The United States, the European Union and the NATO countries are Ukraine’s main supporters and most important providers of military aid in its war against Russia.
Lavrov claimed that kyiv received more than $160 billion in foreign aid in the first year of the “special military operation”, including $75 billion in military aid.
Moreover, Ukraine is almost entirely dependent on financial aid and arms deliveries from the West, he said, adding that “the future looks rather bleak for the Kyiv authorities and their sponsors”. .
Lavrov clarified that Russia would use “all means to defend its people and their vital interests”, advising its adversaries to understand that confrontation is “vain” and advocating political and diplomatic ways to achieve a “balance of interests”.
Asked about the end of the war in Ukraine, which began in February 2022, the Russian minister said that “Ukraine is a puppet of the Americans”, and that the latter “have no intention of ending the conflict” and want to weaken Russia “as much as possible militarily, economically and politically”.
Referring to recent peace talks in Jeddah and Copenhagen, he said a move to end the war without Russian representation showed “little” evidence of the West’s intention to negotiate with Russia.
Regarding Russia’s relations with Africa, the head of Russian diplomacy said that the second Russia-Africa summit, held in July in St. Petersburg, “confirmed the firm commitment of Moscow and African countries to maintain cooperation and develop partnership relations.”
This article is originally published on aa.com.tr