Russia’s foreign minister Sergei Lavrov has accused the West of launching a ‘total hybrid war’ against Russia.
Speaking on the 80th day of the conflict in Ukraine, Mr Lavrov said it was hard to predict how long ‘hybrid war’ would last.
Highlighting the barrage of sanctions imposed on Moscow by the West, the minister attempted to portray Russia as the target, not the perpetrator, of aggression.
‘The collective West has declared total hybrid war on us and it is hard to predict how long all this will last but it is clear the consequences will be felt by everyone, without exception,’ he said in a speech.
Mr Lavrov said efforts by the West to isolate Russia were doomed to fail, pointing to the nation’s relations with China, India, Algeria and Gulf countries.
He also accused Western nations of stealing other countries’ assets and losing their reputation as reliable partners.
‘In the future, the world economy will be de-Americanised,’ he said.
‘We did everything to avoid a direct clash – but now that the challenge has been thrown down, we of course accept it.
‘We are no strangers to sanctions: they were almost always there in one form or another.’
His comments come hours after G7 foreign ministers signed a statement saying member nations will continue to put economic pressure on Russia.
The group, which includes the UK, USA, Canada, Japan, Germany, France and Italy, also backed giving more aid and arms to Ukraine as well as speeding up efforts to ‘end reliance on Russian energy supplies’.
‘We reaffirm our determination to further increase economic and political pressure on Russia, continuing to act in unity,’ a joint statement read.
Russia-Ukraine war: Everything you need to know
Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine began on February 24, the country has suffered widespread damages and loss of life amid a major bombing campaign.
Millions of people have fled the country, with thousands of British people opening up their homes to Ukrainian refugees.
During the course of the war, Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky has remained in Kyiv, despite the Ukrainian capital being subjected to a barrage of bombing.
Zelensky has continuously pushed for aid and support from world leaders, as well as pressing for fast-tracked NATO membership.
Meanwhile, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin has been widely condemned for his attack on Ukraine.
His actions have been met by harsh economic sanctions, bans from competing in major sporting events, and countries moving away from using Russian oil.
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