A top Russian diplomat says the so-called Group of Seven (G7) is playing a “dangerous game” by making aggressive and baseless criticism of the Kremlin as the move would push Russia closer to China and help their unification against western challenges.
Andrei Kelin, Russia’s ambassador to the UK, made the remarks in an interview with Reuters after G7 foreign ministers earlier this month scolded both China and Russia, labeling the Kremlin as malicious and Beijing as a bully in such issues as Ukraine and Chinese Taipei.
In a lengthy communique, the group of seven leading industrialized nations accused Russia of destabilizing activities including the 2014 “annexation” of Crimea, military buildup on Ukraine’s border and meddling in the internal affairs of other countries.
The group also voiced support for the secessionist government in Chinese Taipei and accused Beijing of alleged rights abuses in the western Xinjiang region.
Responding to the allegations, Kelin said the G7’s communique was biased, confrontational, lacked substance and was stoking anti-Western feelings among Russians, while its aggressive attitude towards Russia and China was pushing the two world powers together.
“This is a dangerous game,” the Russian ambassador said. “Russia and China have enormous potential in different fields – in the economy, in technology, in military capacities, in politics – this potential is spread around the world.”
“We are not allies with China, however pushing Russia and China, it closes our ranks with China – in that sense we are more and more united against challenges that are being presented from the West.”
G7 leaders are slated to gather for a summit in St. Ives, in the southern English region of Cornwall on June 11 and dealing with Russia is expected to be on the agenda.
Kelin said Russia would proceed according to its own geopolitical interests and that if there were issues that needed to be discussed then dialogue was the best way.
Asked about G7 criticism of the state of human rights in Russia, Kelin said the United States and Britain should pay more attention to the state of their own democracy after the attacks on the US Capitol and race issues in Britain.
“Look at yourself in this situation – but they don’t want to look at themselves,” the Russian ambassador said. “No one gives them the right to judge others – especially on the state of democracy.”