SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association) – Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev says resetting relations with the US is “impossible” while Western sanctions remain in force, slamming the punitive measures as “destructive” and “stupid.”
Medvedev made the comments in an interview with the American broadcaster, CBS, aired on Wednesday as sanctions imposed by the US and the European Union (EU) on Russia remain in place over the crisis in Ukraine.
The Russian prime minister said the sanctions have “no doubt” damaged relations and undermined the “foundations of international relations,” adding that Russia would, however, overcome the sanctions, which he believed would be lifted in the near future.
Elsewhere in the interview, Medvedev also criticized US President Barack Obama’s recent speech before the United Nations General Assembly, in which he labeled Moscow as a key threat.
“I don’t want to dignify it with a response. It’s sad, it’s like some kind of mental aberration. We need to come back to a normal position, and only after that we can elaborate on how we are going to elaborate our positions in the future,” said Medvedev.
Tensions between Russia and the West heightened after Ukraine’s Black Sea peninsula of Crimea joined the Russian Federation following a referendum in March.
Relations were strained further after Ukraine launched military operations in mid-April to silence pro-Russia protests in the country’s mainly Russian speaking regions in the country’s east.
The United States and the European Union accuse Russia of destabilizing Ukraine and have slapped a number of sanctions against Russian and pro-Russia figures. Moscow, however, rejects the accusation and has imposed retaliatory punitive measures on European countries.