Lavrov: Why does US naval exercises around China not raise any questions?

Sergey Lavrov, Foreign Minister of Russia

© APA | Sergey Lavrov, Foreign Minister of Russia

# 23 January 2023 15:28 (UTC +04:00)

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Monday that he did not understand why military exercises together with Chinese and South African partners could cause a mixed reaction in society and that Moscow is not interested in scandals and provocations, APA's Moscow correspondent reports.

"As for naval exercises, I think there is nothing even to comment on. Three sovereign countries conduct exercises without violating any norms of international law. I don't understand how they can cause a 'mixed' reaction," Lavrov told reporters at a press conference with South African Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor.

At the same time, the minister stressed that the exercises could probably cause such a reaction from US colleagues.

"US colleagues believe that only they can conduct exercises around the world. Now they are actively engaged in naval exercises within the framework of the Indo-Pacific strategies around China, in the South China Sea, in the Taiwan Strait, and this does not cause any mixed reaction from anyone," the diplomat noted.

The minister underscored that Russia "does not want any scandals and provocations" and that Russia-China-South Africa exercises are transparent, as all partners provided the necessary information.

"We simply advocate for each country to have its own rights in the international system, as stipulated by the UN Charter," Lavrov concluded.