Any Ukraine peace talks should be about 'new world order': Lavrov

AFP , Friday 7 Apr 2023

Moscow wants any Ukraine peace talks to focus on creating a "new world order", Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on a visit to Turkey on Friday.

Russia s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov speaks during a joint news conference with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu after their talks, in Ankara, Turkey, Friday, April 7, 2023. AP


The top Russian diplomat was in Turkey -- which has retained ties with both Moscow and Kyiv -- to hold talks with his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu.

He also threatened to abandon a landmark grain deal, which Turkey helped broker if obstacles to Russian exports remain.

"Any negotiation needs to be based on taking into account Russian interests, Russian concerns," Lavrov said.

"It should be about the principles on which the new world order will be based."

He added that Russia rejects a "unipolar world order led by 'one hegemon'".

Russia has long said it was leading a struggle against the United State's dominance over the international stage and argues the Ukraine offensive is part of that fight.

The Kremlin this week said it had no choice but to continue it's more than year-long offensive in Ukraine, seeing no diplomatic solution.

The beginning of the offensive saw rising fears of a global food crisis as Russia and Ukraine are major exporters of grain and other agricultural products.

Lavrov however said Russia may pull out of the landmark deal that allowed vital exports to leave blocked ports in the Black Sea.

"If there is no further progress in removing barriers to the export of Russian fertilizers and grain, we will think about whether this deal is necessary," Lavrov said.

On the eve of the visit, Moscow said it extended the agreement "as a gesture of goodwill for another 60 days".

Russia has repeatedly threatened to abandon the agreement that has allowed the export of more than 25 million tons of grain.

Moscow has been complaining that its side of the agreement, promising the right to export fertilizer free from Western sanctions, is not respected.

Turkey is pushing for a 120-day extension in compliance with the original agreement, which was negotiated by Ankara and the United Nations last July.

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