Getting out the oars while walking on eggshells, a perilous tightrope walker exercise. Since the famous scientific journal The Lancet published an independent study confirming the good performance of the anti-covid vaccine Sputnik V, the world has stormed the rhetoric about Russia. Soaring mistrust, replaced by lyricism which was, until then, the hallmark of Vladimir Putin about his national vaccine … Sputnik V is “good news for humanity”, even ignited, from Moscow, the head of diplomacy of the European Union Josep Borrell.
Sent to the Russian capital to mediate the Navalny affair, the former Spanish minister tried to improve relations with the Putin regime, ready to develop production partnerships with different countries. He said “hope that the European Medicines Agency will be able to certify” the injection developed in Russia, which has become a tool of its prestige and its policy of influence. “There are subjects on which we can and must work together,” he insisted, citing in particular “culture, research, Covid-19, the climate”.
“We have noted our readiness to cooperate pragmatically where there is a common interest, where it is profitable for both parties,” replied Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. The head of Russian diplomacy did not fail to specify, like a little salt on the wound, to have “contacts” with Washington “to see if there is the possibility of acting together”, while in the ‘EU “several countries are interested in producing the vaccine on their territory”.
Borrell, however, did not give up discussing the primary subject of his visit, asserting during this joint press conference that “questions of rule of law, human rights, civil society and political freedoms remain central for our common future ”. Before being received by Lavrov, Borrel had met representatives of civil society and deplored “the reduction of space for independent voices in Russia”. The head of European diplomacy even said that relations with Russia were “at their lowest”.
Although Russia qualifies European critics as interference after the arrest of Kremlin opponent Alexei Navalny, Borrell reiterated “the call for a release and the launch of an impartial investigation into his poisoning”. The EU has denounced the poisoning by a military nerve agent developed during the Soviet times which he suffered in August in Siberia. Faced with Moscow’s refusal to investigate, the Europeans adopted targeted sanctions against senior Russian officials, and strongly criticized the crackdown on pro-democracy protests over the past two weekends. This Friday, Moscow for its part announced the expulsion of diplomats from Germany, Poland and Sweden.
Original article by : www.leparisien.fr