RIA Novosti: Russia sets out what it wants from USA, NATO, EU in new foreign policy document

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(RIA Novosti – June 8, 2015)

Russia reserves the right to respond to any unfriendly steps towards it taken by the USA, says the document containing a review of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s performance in 2014 and medium-term objectives, as reported by RIA Novosti (part of the state-owned International News Agency Rossiya Segodnya) on 8 June.

“In constructing our engagement with the American side, we cannot help taking into account the steps taken by Barack Obama’s administration at their own initiative to increase bilateral tension, in effect freeze contacts in most areas and consistently build up the pressure of sanctions against Russia with the aim of weakening the Russian economy and creating conditions for ‘shaking up’ the internal political situation. We reserve the right to respond appropriately to all unfriendly steps towards us,” RIA Novosti quoted the document saying.

It also said that a way out of the spiral of confrontation and a return to stable bilateral relations was only possible “if Washington stopped hostile actions towards Russia and the White House reaffirmed in practice its readiness for dialogue based on the principle of true equality and mutual respect of interests”.

Another RIA Novosti report quoted the document saying: “We believe that the two countries have a special responsibility for maintaining international peace and stability, we remain open to contacts on the situation in Ukraine, the Syrian crisis, the Iranian nuclear programme, the settlement of conflicts in the Middle East and North Africa, and other matters of mutual interest”.

NATO

On NATO, the document says that “we believe that the resumption of a full-scale dialogue with NATO on security and strategic stability is only possible on the basis of equality and provided that our national interests in the area of stability are taken into account in practice”.

The Foreign Ministry also said Moscow believed it was justified in using the remaining channel of political dialogue within the NATO-Russia Council and bilateral contacts with representatives of key member states to explain the adverse effects and potential dangers of changing the existing configuration of forces in Europe, a later RIA Novosti report said.

European Union

On relations with the EU, a report by Russian state-owned TASS news agency (formerly ITAR-TASS) quoted the document saying: “Despite the complexities of the current moment, relations with European Union, our neighbour and major trade and economic partner, will objectively remain one of the priorities of Russian foreign policy in the next few years. We remain ready for a meaningful dialogue with the EU in the interests of promoting the project of ‘integrating integrations’, and forming in future a single economic and humanitarian space from the Atlantic to the Pacific based on the principles of equal and indivisible security.”