Excerpts from Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s interview with DPA (German Press Agency)
Moscow, 13 September 2018
For us, the European Union is not an adversary but an important neighbour and partner. […] We are interested in the European Union being united, strong as well as independent in strategic decision-making.
Unfortunately, Russia-EU relations are currently not at their best. Inspired by guidelines from overseas, Russophobic forces within the EU continue to vigorously impose misperception of our country as a source of “strategic challenges.” It is regretful that Brussels, lacking independence, began to unwind an anti-Russian sanction spiral prompted by Washington. We were quite surprised how hastily the European Union volunteered to suffer multi-billion losses. And the Americans meanwhile have not suffered and are not suffering any. It is for the Europeans to decide whether they need that.
On our part, we expect that common sense will eventually prevail and we will be able to return to the path of mutually respectful dialogue. In this context, I cannot but be glad that the number of those in Europe who are realising the confrontational approach towards Russia is rising.