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Russia adopts new anti-West foreign policy strategy

March 31, 2023

Vladimir Putin declared a new foreign policy strategy, designating the United States as the greatest threat facing Russia and highlighting Moscow's alliance with China.

Traditional Russian wooden nesting dolls, called Matryoshka dolls, depicting Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin
A new Russian foreign policy strategy designates China (and India) as strategic partnersImage: Natalia Kolesnikova/AFP/Getty Images

President Vladimir Putin on Friday signed new guidelines aimed at curbing Western "dominance" and identifying China and India as key partners for the future.

The 42-page document, which was published on the Kremlin's website, said that Russia would aim to "create the conditions for any state to reject neo-colonialist and hegemonic aims."

Russia has become increasingly isolated on the world stage and has sought to boost political and economic ties with countries in Africa and Asia such as China and India that taken a more neutral stance towards its offensive in Ukraine

A document, a de facto handbook for Russian diplomats, designated that United States as the greatest threat facing the country. The document describes the US as "the main instigator, organizer and executor of the aggressive anti-Russian policy of the collective West."

Russia's foreign policy, according to the document, should reflect that the US is "the source of the main risks to Russia's security, international peace and a balanced, just and sustainable development of mankind."

"The Russian Federation intends to give priority to the elimination of vestiges of the dominance of the United States and other unfriendly countries in world politics," the strategy document read.

The term "unfriendly countries" has been used by Russia to refer to those countries, particularly in Europe and North America, that have condemned Russian invasion of Ukraine and adopted sanctions.

Strategic partners in the East

At the same time, the 42-page doctrine singled out China and India as Russia's strategic partners and argued that Moscow will position itself towards other countries.

Putin recently talked up ties in particular with China during President Xi Jinping's visit to Moscow earlier this month. Moscow has also stepped up energy supplies to both China and India after being almost entirely cut off from its traditional European markets.

The document stressed the importance of "the deepening of ties and coordination with friendly sovereign global centers of power and development located on the Eurasian continent."

The doctrine also described Russia as a "state-civilization" tasked with defending what it called the "Russian world" and "traditional spiritual and moral values" against "pseudo-humanistic and other neo-liberal ideological attitudes."

China and Russia extend 'strategic partnership'

Lavrov says about 'existential threats' to Russia

Presenting the new strategy, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told a televised meeting of Russia's Security Council that the country faced "existential threats" to its security and development from "unfriendly states."

According to Lavrov, the start of what Moscow calls its "special military operation" in Ukraine had ushered in "revolutionary changes" in world affairs that now needed to be reflected in Russia's main foreign policy document.

Putin also said that updates to Russia's strategy for engagement on the global stage were necessary due to "radical changes" in the world..

dh/jcg (AFP, dpa, Reuters)

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