Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks at a meeting of the Board of Trustees of the Alexander Gorchakov Public Diplomacy Fund, Moscow, March 25, 2022


We are starting a meeting of the Board of Trustees of the Alexander Gorchakov Public Diplomacy Fund.

There is no need to mention again that we are having this meeting at a difficult time. The international situation has reached its boiling point. In fact, we are witnessing the climax of a policy to contain Russia, pursued by the West for a long time now in order to weaken our positions, to try to reassert a unipolar world (as they are now admitting almost openly), demanding everyone to obey the “rules” developed by Western countries. The United States is playing a critical role in advancing these policies and philosophies. This is clear to everyone.

The support provided by Washington and Brussels (NATO and the EU) to the Kiev regime in order to turn it into a tool for containing Russia and everything that is Russian came as the high point of their Russophobic policies. All these years, Ukraine has consistently been passing laws banning the use of the Russian language in education, the media, and even in everyday life. That way, all Russian roots and the common history of the Russian and Ukrainian peoples were ripped out in Ukraine.

In recent years, Ukraine has been flooded with weapons, drawn into NATO, and nudged towards a forceful solution of the Donbass issue. The Kiev leadership was encouraged to sabotage the Minsk Package of Measures for the peaceful settlement of the crisis in eastern Ukraine even despite the fact that this document is part of international law and was approved by a UN Security Council resolution.

While the Ukrainian leadership was evading its obligations under the Minsk agreements, the nationalists were destroying civilian facilities, schools and hospitals in Donbass. Everyone knows that. These facts, including the killing of civilians, were regularly depicted by our media, but hushed up in the West. Over 10,000 civilians are dead. No one in the West paid attention to the inhuman economic, trade, transport and food blockade of the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics.

Kiev’s unconcealed plans to acquire nuclear capability caused our concern. The military biological programmes implemented by the Pentagon in Ukraine and the creation of almost 30 laboratories came to our attention. We raised this issue at the UN Security Council. This is not a one-time act, and this topic will remain in the focus because it is directly related to risks and threats to international peace and security. It is in this vein that we will be asking questions about non-transparent military-biological activities around the globe.

We are particularly concerned about the geopolitical space of the former USSR, where the American military and the Pentagon are establishing military bio-laboratories. Even the host countries of these US facilities do not always know what kind of research they are making there.

President of Russia Vladimir Putin explained in detail that in this situation we had no choice. An onslaught was waged against us from all sides to impede our development and create a direct threat at our borders. Furthermore, Ukraine officially announced that it would never fulfil the Minsk agreements. We had no choice but to recognize the DPR and the LPR and to launch a special military operation at their requests and based on our mutual assistance treaties with them. This operation is aimed at protecting people and their lives from the danger of the war, at demilitarising and de-Nazifying Ukraine. We had to make sure that the threats to Russia’s security and the rebirth of Nazi and neo-Nazi ideology and practice, banned by the Nuremberg Trials, would never come from the territory of Ukraine.

Today, a total hybrid war was declared against us. Hitler’s Germany used this term. Now it is mentioned by many European politicians when they describe what they want to do with the Russian Federation. They do not hide their goals but declare them in public: to break, destroy, eliminate and stifle the Russian economy and Russia as a whole.

When we see this no-holds-barred sanctions campaign, we understand that nothing stands behind the “values” that our Western colleagues have continuously preached at us: freedom of expression, a market economy, the inviolability of private ownership or the presumption of innocence. As soon as the West had to do something practical as regards Russia, it easily abandoned all these values.

Regardless of these efforts, isolating Russia is out of the question (although precisely this goal was set). Nor are we going to self-isolate. We have many friends, allies and partners in the world. Russia works with many countries on all continents within many associations. We will continue to do so.

Propaganda juggles the voting numbers for provocative resolutions in the UN. However, the overwhelming majority of states outside the historical collective West do not want to play a lopsided game. They are subjected to enormous pressure, but they should not be guided by the provocative texts of propaganda that the West plays with at the UN; they need to be guided by the real status of trade and economic ties. The overwhelming majority of states has not joined (and, I’m convinced, will not join) the West’s sanctions game. These states are interested in developing equitable interstate cooperation based on the key principles of the UN Charter, primarily the sovereign equality of states. The West is crudely trampling this underfoot and imposing its “supremacy” on all countries. The history of Russia and Europe has witnessed such attempts to subdue everyone and everything. They are doomed to fail.


It is necessary to take into account the current geopolitical environment in the work of the Fund. Emphasis should be laid on promoting cooperation with the organisations in the countries that have remained immune to anti-Russian hysteria. They account for the overwhelming majority of the international community (over 80 percent of the world’s population). The newest challenges and threats (cyberspace and the persisting risk of war) should remain on the Fund’s agenda.

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