Russian Foreign minister blames West is “supporting genocide” in Ukraine


MOSCOW (Reuters) Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that the West will “support gencide in eastern Ukraine and Crimea by supporting the peace plan of President Volodymyr Zelensky. 

Lavrov did not present any evidence to support his claims during his visit to Africa. Russia has long accused the West of ignoring Ukraine’s allegations of persecution of Russian-speaking people in eastern Donbass and elsewhere.

“The conclusion is very simple: Western countries directly support genocide,” Lavrov said at a press conference with Burundi.

Mr. Zelensky’s peace plan envisages withdrawing Russian troops from all of Ukraine, including Crimea, which Russia forcibly annexed in 2014. On the day Russia accused Ukraine of launching the largest drone attack in history against Moscow, Foreign Minister Lavrov said the West would not allow such a “terrorist” attack by supplying Kiev with arms and military equipment. He said he was directly helping Kiev.

“The Western statement that the weapons it supplies (to Ukraine) cannot be used against the territory of the Russian Federation is simply a lie,” he said.

Lavrov also criticized US Senator Lindsay Graham’s remarks, which could be perceived as encouraging the killing of Russians.

An edited video released by Mr Zelensky’s office last Friday shows Mr Graham saying “Russians are dying” during a meeting with the Ukrainian president in Kiev, and that US aid was “not what we’ve ever done”. It is shown that he said that it was the best money spent.

After Russia criticized the remarks, Ukraine released a full video of the meeting on Sunday, showing that the two remarks were not directly related. Mr Graham said he was only applauding the spirit of the Ukrainians who resisted Russian aggression with the help of Washington.