December 4, 2022

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Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov: The West wants to swallow the Asia-Pacific region

Ukraine is also defamed
Lavrov: The West wants to swallow the Asia-Pacific region

At the ASEAN summit, Russia’s foreign minister repeatedly lashed out at NATO and the US. They wanted to militarize the Asia-Pacific region to reduce Chinese and Russian interests. Failure of a joint final declaration is due to inadmissible claims.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has accused the US and NATO of seeking hegemony in the Asia-Pacific region by militarising it. “The United States and its allies, as well as NATO, are now trying to devour this region,” Lavrov said on the sidelines of the ASEAN summit, according to Russian state news agency TASS. The goal is the militarization of the region, “with an obvious focus on containing Chinese and Russian interests in the region,” he stressed in the Cambodian capital, Phnom Penh.

US President Joe Biden took a clear stance against China at the summit. According to the White House, he rejected China’s territorial claims in the South China Sea. A ruling by the International Court of Arbitration in The Hague, which dismissed China’s claims as illegal in 2016, was “final and legally binding”. Freedom of navigation and overflight in the South and East China Sea beyond Japan must be respected.

Globally, the US wants to compete with China aggressively, the White House has said. They also wanted to draw attention to human rights violations. At the same time, however, communication links must be maintained “to prevent competition from degenerating into conflict”.

“Totally unacceptable language” in Ukraine

Lavrov said the summit’s joint final statement failed due to disputes over the situation in Ukraine. “No joint decisions were made today as the United States and its Western allies insist on completely unacceptable language regarding the situation in and around Ukraine.”

Lavrov is on his way from the ASEAN meeting to the Group of Major Economic Powers (G20) summit in Bali, Indonesia. He is representing President Vladimir Putin there, who canceled his participation. On the other hand, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy intends to address the crowd at the Nusa Dua resort via video. However, at an ASEAN meeting in Cambodia, all ten member states disagreed with Zelensky’s video speech.

(This article was originally published on Sunday, November 13, 2022.)

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