Russia’s State Duma Chairman Volodin Denounces EU Attempt To Sabotage Biden-Putin Summit
May 31, 2021 (EIRNS)—Chairman of the Russian State Duma Vyacheslav Volodin on May 30 denounced the European Parliament and its President David Sassoli for attempting to sabotage the summit between U.S. President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin. “The European Parliament and its President David Sassoli have tried to gain political weight using the upcoming meeting between the Russian and U.S. Presidents as a pretext,” Duma Speaker Volodin wrote on his Telegram channel. He recalled Sassoli et al. inviting Washington to sign on to a draft joint statement to be made public ahead of the summit, that would call for toughening sanctions against Russia and China.
“As a matter of fact, the European Parliament is imposing a confrontational agenda on Joe Biden ahead of his meeting with Vladimir Putin. It is obviously meant to exert pressure, to create a negative backdrop for the summit—in a bid to gain political points on the topics that might be discussed by the two Presidents.”
Volodin said, in a reckless attempt “to wreck possible Russian-U.S. agreements, the Europeans are cutting their own throats” and ignore the role of the Russian-U.S. relations for peace and well-being in Europe, calling it a “miserable attempt to butt into the dialogue.”
RIA Novosti reported that Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov also stated yesterday: “The Americans must assume that a number of signals from Moscow ... will be uncomfortable for them, including in the coming days,” which Reuters tied to Biden’s fresh announcement he will ask Putin to respond about “human rights” at the summit. Ryabkov said Russia would be prepared to respond to Biden’s queries about human rights in Russia and said that Moscow was being more flexible than Washington when it came to drawing up an agenda for the summit, RIA reported, according to Reuters.
Today, came one signal, detailed by the Defense Ministry website: Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu told the Defense Ministry Board Session today that the situation in the Western strategic direction is characterized by an increase in military threats. Over the past 7 years, the intensity of flights of the U.S. Air Force’s strategic bomber aviation in Europe has grown 14 times. NATO ships with guided missile weapons systematically enter the Baltic Sea. Only last year, ships of this class performed missions near the Kaliningrad region three times.
“The actions of our Western counterparts are destroying the security system in the world and forcing us to take adequate countermeasures,” General of the Army Sergei Shoigu said.
“We are constantly improving the combat composition of the troops. By the end of the year, about 20 formations and military units will be formed in the Western Military District....
“In addition, the training of personnel and military command and control bodies is constantly being improved. The intensity of practicing combat training tasks by the ships of the Baltic Fleet increased by 30%. More than 200 exercises have been completed using various types of weapons,”
Finally, he said, a set of tasks will begin in June within the framework of joint exercises of special forces. “I want to emphasize that the Zapad-2021 exercise is planned. It is carried out by decision of the Presidents of Russia and Belarus and is exclusively defensive in nature. ... Our partners will be informed about the parameters of the exercise, and the event itself will be able to be visited by international observers and journalists,” said Shoigu.