HELSINKI, FINLAND – MARCH 3, 2020: Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov during a press conference following a meeting with Finland’s Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto at the House of the Estates. Vitaly Belousov/POOL/TASS Ôèíëÿíäèÿ. Õåëüñèíêè. Ìèíèñòð èíîñòðàííûõ äåë ÐÔ Ñåðãåé Ëàâðîâ âî âðåìÿ ïðåññ-êîíôåðåíöèè ïî èòîãàì âñòðå÷è ñ ìèíèñòðîì èíîñòðàííûõ äåë Ôèíëÿíäèè Ïåêêîé Õààâèñòî â Äîìå ñîñëîâèé. Âèòàëèé Áåëîóñîâ/POOL/ÒÀÑÑ

MOSCOW, April 29. /TASS/. Russia is upset by attempts of certain western countries to put the blame for the coronavirus pandemic on China, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in an exclusive interview with TASS First Deputy Director General Mikhail Gusman.

“I’d primarily would like to say that we are saddened by the rhetoric and attempts to point figure at one side or another. You mentioned that the US is accusing China. Europe is also voicing its accusations (it happened in France and Germany) against China,” he answered the question.

The minister pointed to the statements of certain European countries intending to demand tens and even hundreds of billions of dollars from China as compensation for not notifying the global community about the pandemic in time. “US President Donald Trump recently addressed this issue during one of his briefings and said that the US might put forward similar claims but demanding much bigger amounts than hundreds of billions of dollars,” he noted. “We see it all. This is all very sad, of course.”

Lavrov stressed that victory over pandemic remains an absolute priority. “Later, we will definitely need to investigate reasons it emerged at least to understands how to create a reliable antidote for the future. There are forecasts of scientists that this very coronavirus might come back and it will be with us permanently like flu and a number of other seasonal diseases. Therefore, we will definitely need to study the reasons,” he emphasized.

The Russian foreign minister clarified that this investigation is necessary not to simply say, “I was right. This is who is to blame. I did everything right and now let’s vote for me,” but to understand how to draft optimal responses to overcome this threat in the future.

Trump earlier announced that the US administration is considering pressing financial claims against Beijing due to losses suffered in the pandemic.

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