Civilisations like India, China, Egypt have self esteem and can't be threatened: Sergey Lavrov

Our relations with India rest on a solid foundation, says Russia’s Foreign Minister

Published - September 02, 2022 10:50 pm IST - NEW DELHI

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. File

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. File | Photo Credit: AP

Russia's relations with India rest on a solid foundation which has been nurtured over the past 75 years since India's independence, said Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in a speech in Moscow. Addressing a group of students and officials at the Moscow State Institute of International Relations, an institute of diplomacy under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia, Mr. Lavrov singled out western representatives who had talked about "consequences" for countries that continued doing business with Russia in the backdrop of the Ukraine crisis.

"They 'rush about' with this and proudly declare in public that they demanded that such-and-such countries should impose sanctions against Russia, otherwise they will face consequences. From the perspective of not even diplomacy, but common sense, how can they make such arrogant public statements in relation to such countries as India, China, Turkey, Egypt, Indonesia? ...It is simply insulting to hear such demands," said Mr. Lavrov in the speech delivered on Thursday.

Affordable energy

Mr. Lavrov's comments came a day before the G7 Finance Ministers agreed to put a price cap on Russian origin crude oil and petroleum products. External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar in recent comments has said that India's purchase of Russian energy is part of the government's "obligation" to provide affordable energy to the bulk of the Indian population. However, U.S. Deputy National Security Adviser Duleep Singh during his visit to India in April was unusually blunt and had said that there would be "consequences" for the economies that continued energy trade with Russia despite western warnings.

Referring to such remarks, Mr. Lavrov said, "When these States being publicly threatened, does no one understand that such civilisations have self esteem? ...When great states are told that they must do something on orders from somewhere across the ocean, I can only imagine what long-term damage this causes to relations with those who are engaged in such dictate."

Mr. Lavrov emphasised that the Indian leadership including Mr. Jaishankar "have publicly rejected any attempts" at imposing sanctions against Russia and announced that he is likely to meet his Indian counterpart at the UN General Assembly's annual session in New York. He said President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Narendra Modi are scheduled to meet at the upcoming SCO summit in Samarkand during September 15-16.

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