US is ignoring the targeting of Russian speakers in Ukraine, Moscow’s envoy in Washington said
America’s willful ignorance of atrocities being committed against Russian-speaking people in Ukraine is causing “outrage and indignation” in Moscow and is an example of Washington’s “double standards,” Russia’s ambassador to the US claimed on Thursday.
Anatoly Antonov’s statement came in response to a comment made by US State Department spokesman Ned Price, who accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of spreading allegations with “no basis of truth.” On Tuesday, Putin claimed that Kiev was committing “genocide” in Donbass, in east Ukraine.
In a statement published on Facebook, Antonov listed the shelling of residential areas and the 2014 Trade Unions House fire in Odessa as examples of Kiev targeting Russian speakers.
He also claimed that mass graves with almost 300 people had been found in the Donbass, and asserted that they had been killed because of their native language. Similar claims have been slammed by the US of being “false narratives.”
“Washington’s beautiful slogans about the supreme value of human rights are not worth a penny. The main geopolitical goal of the United States is to push Russia back to the East as far as possible,” the envoy said. “To that end, a policy to force the Russian-speaking population out of their current places of residence is needed.”
“Americans prefer not only to ignore the attempts of forced assimilation of Russians in Ukraine but also strongly condone them with political and military support,” he continued, adding that the interests of millions of Russians living in Ukraine must be protected, which he called “a guarantee of Ukraine’s statehood and territorial integrity.”
The armed conflict in Ukraine began in 2014, following the events of the Maidan, when violent street protests toppled the democratically elected government in Kiev. Shortly after, two regions declared themselves independent states, named the Donetsk (DPR) and Lugansk (LPR) People’s Republics.
Moscow has repeatedly refused to recognize the breakaway states as sovereign, instead calling for them to be integrated into Ukraine with a special status. However, earlier this week, the Russian State Duma adopted a resolution urging Putin to recognize their independence.
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