Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday approved a new concept of foreign policy. In the document, among other things, the Russian Federation is called a “state-civilization”, a stronghold of the Russian world and “one of the sovereign centers of world development.”
It follows from the document that the Russian Federation “does not consider itself an enemy of the West”, but cannot help but engage in “eliminating the rudiments of the dominance of the United States and other unfriendly states in world affairs.”
As one of the key tasks, “the transformation of Eurasia into a single all-continental space of peace, stability, mutual trust, development and prosperity” is stated.
“Today will have a rather important meeting with the permanent members of the Security Council, because the agenda will include a report by Foreign Minister Lavrov on a new concept of Russian foreign policy,” said Dmitry Peskov, press secretary of the President of the Russian Federation.— Let’s see what will happen in the open mode, but at least the president’s words in this case, we will hear with you.
And so it happened. Vladimir Putin said that he approved the concept and explained the need to develop this document.
“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in coordination with the presidential administration, the Security Council staff, the government, and many ministries and departments, carried out large-scale and painstaking work to update it and bring it into line with modern geopolitical realities,” he added, after which he asked Sergey Lavrov to talk about the main the provisions of the document.
“The logic of the document reflects the changing geopolitical realities, in fact, revolutionary advances on the outer contour, which have received a visible acceleration with the start of a special military operation,” the Russian minister continued the thought of the president.
“In particular, it states an unprecedented level of international tension over the past decade. The existential nature of threats to the security and development of our country, created by the actions of unfriendly states, is recognized.
The main initiator and conductor of the anti-Russian line is directly named the United States of America, and in general, the policy of the West, aimed at the all-round weakening of Russia, is characterized as a hybrid war of a new type.
As Sergei Lavrov noted, the concept details the Russian “vision of the principles of a more balanced and just world order”, among which are “polycentricity, sovereign equality of states, ensuring their right to choose development models, upholding the cultural and civilizational diversity of the world.”
The concept of foreign policy of the Russian Federation was first approved in 1993. The main task was to “establish stable positive relations with neighboring countries in order to overcome the destabilizing disintegration processes in the territory of the former USSR.”
Vladimir Putin approved the new concept on June 28, 2000. There, the primary task was called “strengthening the union of Russia and Belarus.” In 2008, the concept was approved by President Dmitry Medvedev.
This document spoke of “the prospect of the West losing its monopoly on globalization processes”, and Russia was called “the largest Eurasian power”.
The 2013 concept also contained the idea of ”reducing the ability of the historical West to dominate the world economy and politics.”
The previous version of the document was adopted in 2016. There, 11 tasks of Russian foreign policy were indicated, and the key among them is the protection of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country.
Also mentioned were “preservation and strengthening of strong positions in the world community”, “formation of good-neighbourly relations with neighboring states”, “assistance in eliminating existing hotbeds of conflicts on their territory” and popularization of national culture.
In January 2022, President Vladimir Putin instructed to finalize this fundamental document, taking into account the new realities.
On February 15, 2023, speaking in the State Duma, Sergey Lavrov said : “In our updated concept of foreign policy, we will talk about the need to end the West’s monopoly on the formation of the framework of international life, which should henceforth be determined not in its selfish interests, but on a fair universal basis of the balance of interests as required by the UN Charter, which enshrines the principle of the sovereign equality of all states.”
This idea is indeed one of the key in the new concept. Thus, paragraph 19 states: “In order to facilitate the adaptation of the world order to the realities of a multipolar world, Russia intends to give priority attention to eliminating the vestiges of US and other unfriendly states dominance in world affairs, creating conditions for the abandonment of any state from neo-colonial and hegemonic ambitions.”
The document notes that Russia considers the US course as “a source of major risks for the security of the Russian Federation, international peace, balanced, fair and progressive development”.
It is especially emphasized that “Russia does not consider itself an enemy of the West, does not isolate itself from it, does not have hostile intentions towards it.”
But at the same time, it is made clear that the ball is on the side of the United States and allies — it is they who must realize “the futility of their confrontational policy and hegemonic ambitions”, accept the “difficult realities of a multipolar world”, return over time to “pragmatic interaction with Russia, guided by the principles of a sovereign equality and respect for interests.
The document says a lot about how the Russian Federation sees itself. It is noted that Russia occupies a “special position” – it is “an original state-civilization, a vast Eurasian and Euro-Pacific power that has rallied the Russian people and other peoples that make up the community of the Russian world”.
Further, it is noted that the Russian Federation acts “as one of the sovereign centers of world development and fulfills a historically unique mission to maintain a global balance of power and build a multipolar international system, to provide conditions for the peaceful, progressive development of mankind on the basis of a unifying and constructive agenda”.
Considering all this, the Russian Federation intends to actively engage in “countering the Russophobia campaign”, protecting the Russian language, Russian culture, sports, the Russian Orthodox Church from discrimination, fighting for historical truth, upholding the principle of respect and protection of “universal and traditional spiritual -moral values”.
All key regions are mentioned in the concept. So, about the near abroad, it is said that the main goal is “turning the region into a zone of peace, good neighborliness, sustainable development and prosperity”.
China and India are referred to as “friendly sovereign global power centers” with which it is planned to deepen ties and coordinate policies.
“Comprehensive mutually beneficial cooperation” is also spoken of in relation to “friendly Islamic civilization”.
The Asia-Pacific region is also mentioned: as noted in the document, a policy is being pursued there (obviously by the United States and its allies) aimed at drawing dividing lines.
And Russia intends to oppose this policy. Naturally, there is talk of building up cooperation with Africa (“an original and influential center of world development”; and Latin America.
As for Eurasia, as noted in the document, Russia is striving to transform it into “a single all-continental space of peace, stability, mutual trust, development and prosperity”.