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31 Aug, 2022 08:58

Russia points to cause of Western divisions

Moscow doesn’t seek a lack of unity in the EU, though the bloc would benefit from hearing dissenting voices, Maria Zakharova says
Russia points to cause of Western divisions

Russia does not pursue a foreign policy aimed at dividing the West, or the EU in particular, despite claims to the contrary, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova explained.

However, the bloc could benefit from being more tolerant of dissenting voices, considering how much it has hurt itself with its ‘united’ approach to Russia, she outlined in a radio interview on Wednesday.

Zakharova compared the EU to the group of blind men in the painting ‘The Blind Leading the Blind’ by Dutch Renaissance artist Pieter Bruegel the Elder. 

“They are united. No one in this group, who are being led towards a ditch, voices any doubt, objects, asks questions or protests,” she said.

Brussels’ approach towards Russia is similar, the spokeswoman suggested, noting the “strange suicidal initiatives that are attributed to the EU, but are actually imposed or planted” by an outside force.

She added that when it comes to Russia, the bloc does not tolerate dissenting voices – which is surprising, given that the EU claims to cherish democracy, a system in which opinions that differ from the dominant line of thinking are supposed to be appreciated.

While many Western politicians claim that Russia wants to divide the bloc with its policies, this is not the case, Zakharova said. “If anything, our goal is to return common sense into international relations.” 

Her remarks came during a discussion in the radio interview on the EU’s proposed ban on visas for Russians. The plan is promoted by Ukraine and some Eastern European member states, but Western European nations such as Germany and France believe less radical restrictions should be adopted.

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki suggested this week that an implosion within the EU could occur unless all member states follow the hardline Russia policy that Warsaw has adopted.

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