The EU, as before, demonstrates unwillingness to change its approach towards Russia to a more pragmatic one, the Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at the meeting with members of the Association of European Businesses.
"A strategic review of relations with Russia, which was conducted at the European Council meeting a week ago, showed that the EU is still not ready to develop a pragmatic, corresponding to its own interests, line towards our country," RIA Novosti cited him as saying.
According to the Foreign Minister, the EU's refusal to cooperate with Russia in the fight against terrorism is of particular regret. Meanwhile, Moscow has consistently called for a quick, peaceful and just resolution of the Syrian conflict. "We see the main task in complete eradication of the terrorist threat on the territory of this country and launching at the same time an inclusive political process, based on the UN Security Council resolutions, based on those decisions, which have been made within the framework of the International Syria Support Group," Lavrov said.
The Foreign Minister commented on the recent meeting in the 'Normandy format' and Kiev's position. According to Lavrov, Moscow hopes that the West will be able to convince the Ukrainian authorities to follow the Minsk agreements. "We discussed the situation in Berlin on October 19. We hope that our Western partners will convince the Ukrainian leadership to get down to business," Sergey Lavrov pointed out.
The director general of the Institute for Caspian Cooperation Sergey Mikheyev, told Vestnik Kavkaza, that the EU's pragmatic approach towards Russia will prevail only when the EU stops depending on the US and NATO as much as it does today.
"Unfortunately, the EU is not a totally independent political structure, it is too closely linked to NATO as a military-political bloc and to the US as the main partner for this bloc. I think that this is the basic problem behind European elites' lack of independence and the reason for their failure to understand their own interest, not an interest of the US," he said.
A member of the European Research Centre of the International Relations Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Vladimir Olenchenko, said that such a non-pragmatic position of the EU towards Russia is due to the personal position of the EU leadership.
"Currently, there are many people in the EU institutions who are not yet ready to admit their mistakes (that is the introduction of sanctions) and shift to another model of behavior, where several parties define terms of cooperation," the expert said.
It could be the first step in the revision the erroneous policy of Brussels. "So far, however, we see the opposite thing: the EU continues to persist. For example, if earlier there were 17 discussions on various aspects going on with the [Russian] Economic Development Ministry, now, at the initiative of the European Union, there are only three left," the member of the European Research Centre of the International Relations Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences added.
We may see different degrees of commitment to the policy of tough confrontation in the EU leadership. "There is a struggle within the EU leadership. The European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker holds a more right European position and tends to restore the dialogue. The EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs Federica Mogherini is committed to the same approach. On the other hand, the chairman of the European Union Donald Tusk supports tough confrontation and even goes as far as suggest that the current sanctions regime should became a norm in relations with Russia, leaving a dialogue for exceptional cases," the expert explained.