Some choose the side, Russia - the road | Latest news The Moscow Post
04 December 2022

Some "choose the side," Russia - the road

Over the past week, Russian diplomats "kept a blow" from their Western colleagues.

Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov headed the Russian delegations to the East Asian Summit in Cambodia (Phnom Penh, November 11-13) and the G-20 Summit in Indonesia (Bali, November 15-16). First Deputy Prime Minister Andrei Belousov took part in the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum in Thailand (Bangkok, November 18-19), according to The Moscow Post.

The conditions in which Russian delegations had to work at these meetings differed from the usual ones. Not only did Western countries unsuccessfully try to politically isolate Russia in these meetings, two of which were purely economic. The Bali summit was held in an atmosphere of crisis caused by the firing of an anti-aircraft missile into Poland by the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

Andrei Belousov even "regretted" US Secretary of State Etoni Blinken, who had to "change shoes in the air," recognizing this Ukrainian missile. Speaking in Bangkok, Belousov also predicted an impending "ideal storm" in the global economy in conditions "when negative trends that have been accumulating for a long time converge at a limited time," said the First Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation.

The gray political skies, economic pessimism and psychological tension have not been spared by some other international structures, including the United Nations (UN) and its institutions. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said at the G20 summit that multilateral institutions, including the UN, were unable to cope with the chaos on the planet and solve problems.

Recently, questions have been raised by the actions of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), created in the UN system in 1957. The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), which was formed in 1975 and was conceived as a pan-European security forum, erects obstacles to Russia's full participation in its work.

"The countries of the West and their satellites decided to follow the path of politicization of UNESCO and the World Heritage Committee operating under its auspices... Moreover, the UNESCO Secretariat, a technical structure that, in accordance with the Charter, must fulfill its obligations impartially, "said G.E. Ordzhonikidze, executive secretary of the Russian Commission for UNESCO Affairs.

OSCE Polish border

Moving forward in a special military operation in Ukraine, Russia is forced to overestimate its interests regarding the OSCE. The Polish authorities, which this year chairs this organization, denied Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov a visa to participate in the meeting of the OSCE Council of Foreign Ministers, scheduled for December 1-2.

The Russian side spoke sharply: "Warsaw discredited not only itself, but also caused irreparable damage to the authority of the entire organization as a whole." Was this an expected move on Warsaw's part? "They have almost turned the main OSCE institutions into a booth," the Russian diplomatic service answered this question.

In February 2022, the OSCE expressed "deep regret" about the decision of the Russian Federation to recognize the independence of the LPR and LPR. In October 2021, answering a question about the prospects for the Council of Europe and the OSCE, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that "if Russia had left one of these organizations, then we would have looked at what would happen next with these organizations in terms of participation and other countries."

The political "orientation" of the OSCE was previously the subject of attention of The Moscow Post, relevant questions were asked to Russian diplomats during briefings. The subtext of these issues boiled down to the fact that the "US-dependent" system of European security, in which Europe is used to put pressure on Moscow.

The OSCE also undermines what was created for - security and trust. Recently, the Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) of this organization was directly accused of serving Western interests and espionage activities. "The [OSCE] mission in its public reports presented in many ways a distorted picture of what was happening, hiding the war crimes of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and deliberately discrediting the militia of Donetsk and Lugansk," said Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova.

The official representative of the diplomatic service added that the activities of the SMM were often not only biased, but also illegal. Its employees were associated with Western special services, recruited residents of Donbass, transmitted data from surveillance cameras to the Armed Forces of Ukraine to clarify the positions of the equipment and personnel of the People's Militia of the LPR and DPR, as well as fire adjustments.

The mission covered up the work of Kyiv on the construction of fortifications near the demarcation line and was engaged in "collecting sensitive data in the interests of Western intelligence," Zakharov lifted the "veil" over what the authorities of the DPR and LPR were concerned about for a long time.

IAEA and "dirty bombs" of Kyiv

The responsibility assigned to the IAEA is an order of magnitude higher. This is the safety of work in a peaceful nuclear field and guarantees of non-proliferation of nuclear activities for military purposes. The IAEA's latest moves raise questions.

First, Kyiv is suspected of intending to collect a "dirty bomb." At the end of October, the head of the Russian radiation, chemical and biological protection troops, Igor Kirillov, said that the Russian Ministry of Defense was ready for action "in conditions of radioactive infection," knowing about Kyiv's readiness to use a "dirty bomb." This issue was considered by the UN Security Council, IAEA inspectors came to Ukraine, but found nothing. This was announced at a recent session of the Agency's Governing Council.

Secondly, the Zaporizhzhya NPP (ZPP) passed into Russian jurisdiction by decree of the Russian president on October 5. It is known that the shelling of the Armed Forces of Ukraine threatens its safety, continuing the shelling of the station and its life support systems, the last time this happened yesterday.

On November 20, the head of the Chechen Republic, Ramzan Kadyrov, published a video of the shelling of the ZPP by the Armed Forces of Ukraine on his Telegram channel. On the same day, the adviser to the general director of Rosenergoatom, Renat Karchaa, said that Ukrainian militants had launched 15 strikes, the day before there were 12 strikes.

Commenting on the situation, Kadyrov noted that all international organizations talk about the alleged nuclear threat from Russia, but Ukrainian militants strike at the largest nuclear power plant in Europe. As Vladimir Putin suggested back in September, IAEA employees cannot directly say that the ZPP is shelling the Ukrainian side, they are under pressure from those with whom they work, including the United States and European states.

But the IAEA had to find a solution. And officials found it by adopting a resolution with a clause on the "ownership" of the ZPP. The document, which was adopted by the IAEA Board of Governors,... " does not recognize the attempts of the Russian Federation to take possession of the Ukrainian Zaporizhzhya NPP and calls on the Russian Federation to immediately abandon its unfounded claims to ownership of this plant. "

If we apply this logic of "nuclear safety" to the "dirty missile" that fell in Poland, Moscow will be blamed for the "big accident" at the ZPP, if it happened. Like, the Armed Forces of Ukraine did not attack Russia, but defended "their territory."

The Russian Federation and the PRC voted against the resolution. India, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Vietnam, South Africa, Kenya and Namibia did not vote. Vladimir Rogov, a member of the main council of the Zaporizhzhya region administration, noted that a politically motivated resolution turns the IAEA into a structure subordinate to the interests of the West. The role of the IAEA in a crisis could be different, much more constructive.

The IAEA resolution does not reflect reality, said Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov. In turn, the Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to international organizations in Vienna noted that the resolution goes beyond the agency's mandate. But there are no options. As the press secretary of the President of the Russian Federation Dmitry Peskov noted, despite the document adopted by the IAEA, Russia will continue to communicate with the Agency.

'Six palm trees' in Borrell oasis

Simply put, the interests of the IAEA and OSCE bureaucrats intersected here, if not coincided. Both structures decided that playing on the side of the West is more important than their mandates. Narendra Modi is right to say that the UN cannot deal with chaos and solve problems.

The behavior of the OSCE secretariats, the IAEA and even the UN secretariat fits into the general line of behavior of Western countries dictated from Washington. In the European Union, the foreign ministers of the EU member states also approved the strategy towards Russia. Its author is Josep Borrell, the EU's chief for foreign affairs and security.

The strategy was called new, but there is nothing already tested in it. The "six components" include the tasks of complying with the sanctions and isolation of the Russian Federation, overcoming the crisis by the EU countries, EU interaction with NATO, strengthening energy security and protecting critical infrastructure, increasing defense capabilities, finally, "supporting civil society, human rights defenders, independent media, including in Russia."

According to Zakharova, the ideas inspired by the EU countries do not even contain a hint of the EU's strategic vision in the Russian direction, but provoke a split. "We have no illusions," she said and added that "there is not a word about the negotiation settlement of the Ukrainian crisis, and indeed about ensuring security in Europe, in the proposals of J. Borrell." Containing Russia and "rocking" the domestic political situation "in Russia have become the end of the European Union in itself.

Where is Russia going

As for Russia's strategic priorities in the new, post-European conditions, Sergei Lavrov outlined them, speaking on November 18 at a meeting of the Council of Heads of Constituent Entities of the Russian Federation under the Russian Foreign Ministry. He said that allies and like-minded people in the EAEU, CSTO, CIS, SCO, BRICS and many other countries continue to cooperate with Russia.

The Minister said that it is necessary to support projects that contribute to the strengthening of the technological sovereignty of the Russian Federation, the development of parallel imports and import substitution, the preservation of enterprises with the participation of foreign investors, and the increase in production for the needs of a special military operation.

In the new conditions, interregional ties should be focused on promoting the sustainable development of the constituent entities of the Russian Federation, Lavrov said and added that it is necessary to reformat the international ties of the regions "in the context of adapting Russia's foreign policy to new geopolitical realities."

One of the key tasks is to modernize the border and transport infrastructure, primarily border crossings with the PRC, Kazakhstan and Mongolia.

The priority tasks of "regional diplomacy" are the following:

· work through the Union State,

· regional cooperation within the framework of the EAEU and the CIS,

· regional relations with all friendly states,

· including within the framework of the Forum of Heads of SCO Regions,

· connection with BRICS partners, including the level of municipalities and regions,

· interregional contacts with the PRC,

· interregional cooperation with India,

· connection with Turkey,

· projects with Iran in the field of logistics and financial and banking infrastructure,

· the development of ties with Syria, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman,

· including as part of the participation of Russian companies in promising regional "hubs" of the Persian Gulf zone,

· strengthening the Russia-ASEAN strategic partnership, and

· building ties with States on the African continent, Latin America and the Caribbean.

The DPRK has not yet been included in the list, with which Russia also has a common border.

Sergey Lavrov noted that the solution of these problems will require the coordinated work of all state authorities in charge of international activities, authorities of the constituent entities of the Federation and the expert community. The ultimate goal of common efforts should be to increase the practical impact of international and foreign economic relations between the constituent entities of the Russian Federation, the minister summed up.

If the Russian Foreign Ministry, Rossotrudnichestvo, the ministry's representative offices in the regions, all foreign agencies undertake to provide "all possible assistance" to solve these problems, as the minister formulated, then we should expect changes in these organizations themselves.

Photo: EPA/POOL

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