China voices its ‘consistent’ opposition to foreign meddling after Moscow accuses US of promoting weekend protests in Russia
Following accusations that the US interfered in Russia’s affairs by publishing protest locations last weekend, the Chinese Foreign Ministry noted its disapproval of foreign influence in other countries’ domestic politics.
In a press briefing on Monday, Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian was asked to comment on Russia’s demand that the Americans “explain themselves.”
“China consistently opposes external interference in the internal affairs of a sovereign country,” Zhao Lijian said.
On January 22, the US Embassy in Moscow urged Americans to avoid places in different Russian cities where rallies would be held in support of jailed opposition figure Alexey Navalny. According to Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, the publication of protest locations was “inappropriate” and represents “meddling into [Russian] domestic affairs.”Also on rt.com ‘Absolute meddling’: Kremlin condemns US embassy’s support for unauthorized rallies, Foreign Ministry demands explanation
Peskov was also backed up by Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, who asked readers on social media to imagine “what would’ve happened if the Russian Embassy in Washington published a map with protest routes and their final destination being the Capitol, for example.”
On January 23, supporters of Navalny staged protests across the country demanding his release from prison. The anti-corruption campaigner is currently in detention after being accused of violating the terms of a three-and-a-half-year suspended sentence he received in 2014, after being found guilty of embezzling 30 million rubles ($400,000) from two companies, including the French cosmetics brand Yves Rocher.
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