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26 Apr, 2024 19:44

West must rebuild relations with Russia from scratch – Kremlin

Moscow has had enough of Europe’s hostile attitude, Dmitry Peskov has said
West must rebuild relations with Russia from scratch – Kremlin

Contacts between Russia and Europe will never be the same even after the ongoing conflict between Moscow and Kiev ends, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists on Friday. Russia has seen enough of the West’s hostile treatment and does not want to stick to the old model of relations, he said.

”Russia threatens no one in Europe and expects no one in Europe to threaten it,” Peskov said. That does not mean, though, that the West would be able to continue “business as usual” with Moscow, he warned.

European nations will still have Russia as their neighbor after the conflict and will be bound to maintain certain relations with it, the Kremlin spokesman said. “There will be no relations as before. No one will want it,” he stated, adding that Moscow would certainly oppose reverting to old practices.

”We have had a lot of experience with how the Europeans treat us,” the official explained. “We will always take this experience into account.” Any future relations would thus be based on some “new foundations,” according to Peskov.

The Kremlin spokesman’s words echoed earlier statements by top Russian officials, including by President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. In January, the nation’s top diplomat said that the Ukraine conflict had clearly shown that Moscow cannot trust the West.

”If there had been any illusions left over from the 1990s, that the West would open its arms to embrace us and that democracy would unite us all, they have been completely dispelled,” the minister said at that time, adding that the only thing Washington and its allies wanted was to “live at the expense of others.”

Late last year, Vladimir Putin admitted that he’d been “naive” early on in his political career, despite having served in the Soviet KGB. He said he believed that there was no fundamental reason for the West and Moscow to be at odds after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

The president then said that he eventually understood that the West was seeking to break Russia into several entities that would have less ability to protect their national interests.

Earlier this month, Moscow also pinned the blame on Washington for the current crisis in relations between Russia and Western nations. The ongoing standoff was an exclusive choice of the West itself, Russian Ambassador to the US Anatoly Antonov said at the time. It was not Moscow that “moved its war machine to NATO’s borders” and spearheaded unprecedented economic and personal sanctions, the diplomat said, adding that America simply refuses to understand that Moscow would never give up on its national interests.