The official representative of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs Maria Zakharova, speaking about the Western sanctions on the Russian Federation, noted that Western sanctions at the moment resemble a “gesture of despair.”
“We are increasingly considering sanctions against Russia as a gesture of despair due to the inability of local elites to accept new realities, to abandon the stereotypes of ‘bloc thinking’, to recognize Russia’s right to independently determine ways of development and build relationships with its partners,” Zakharova said in an interview with RT May 3.
According to her, the western side finds it difficult to put up with the success of the Russian economy, the increase in its international competitiveness, as well as the expansion of the presence of high-quality Russian goods and services on world markets.
Zakharova clarified that the imposed sanctions against Russia undoubtedly have a negative impact on relations between the Russian Federation and the West.
“Estimates of the mutual damage vary and are subjective, but amount to hundreds of billions of dollars,” added a spokesman for the Russian Foreign Ministry.
Zakharova noted that at the moment the country is taking active steps to de-dollarize the domestic economy, as well as to combat the general dependence of the world on the national currency of the United States.
In conclusion, the Foreign Ministry spokesman added that Russia will not close itself off from the outside world, despite the pursued goals of the initiators of the sanctions. According to her, Russia will always be open for dialogue on all problematic issues and will be ready for equal and mutually beneficial cooperation with all countries.
On March 22, the EU imposed sanctions against 11 individuals and four organizations from different countries, including Russia, for “human rights violations and abuse.” Two citizens of the Russian Federation were on the sanctions list. They are prohibited from entering the countries of the community, and their bank accounts will be frozen there if discovered.
Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said that Moscow would respond to the EU’s anti-Russian sanctions.
On April 17, Czech Prime Minister Andrei Babis announced suspicions of the Russian special services of involvement in the explosion at an ammunition depot in Vrbetica in 2014. On the same day, Prague decided to expel 18 Russian diplomats.
Moscow, in response to these actions, declared 20 employees of the Czech embassy in the Russian Federation persona non grata. As a result, after a series of mutual expulsions of diplomats, by May 31, seven diplomats, 25 technical staff and 19 people received on the spot will remain in the embassies of the Czech Republic and the Russian Federation.
Also, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and Slovakia announced the expulsion of employees of the Russian embassies as a measure of solidarity with the Czech Republic. In response, the Russian Foreign Ministry declared seven diplomats of these countries persona non grata.
On April 15, US President Joe Biden signed a decree imposing new sanctions on Moscow, and the United States also announced the expulsion of 10 Russian diplomatic personnel in Washington. Later, the Russian Federation announced retaliatory sanctions, which provide for the expulsion of American diplomats, a ban on the entry of a number of high-ranking US officials into the country, etc.