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Russia urges ‘diverse’ ties with Muslim countries

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov

Opening a major annual conference between Russia and Muslim countries, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov urges existence of diverse and extensive interaction between Moscow and those nations.

The annual Russia-Islamic World summit is holding its 12th edition in the southwestern Russian city of Kazan. 

It seeks to further cooperation in the economic, political, and cultural areas between the Russian Federation and countries of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). The conference began on Wednesday and will wrap up on Friday.

"Russia’s relations with the member states of the OIC are based on the traditions of long-standing friendship and partnership, inter-religious and inter-civilizational dialog, the joint efforts for maintaining regional and international security with the invariable commitment to the goals and principles of the UN Charter," Lavrov said in a statement. 

"That is why it is legitimate that we are interacting closely and successfully in very diverse formats," he added.

Western intelligence war

A Russian diplomat, who was also addressing the event, separately warned about an ongoing Western “intelligence war” targeting his country and the Muslim states alike, IRNA reported.

Deputy Director of the Russian foreign ministry’s Information and Press Department, Alexander Bikantov, urged, therefore, that Moscow and the Muslim countries engage in effective cooperation among each other to repel the hostile Western maneuvers.

He said the Western states had started waging the war based on certain approaches that depart from neoliberalism.

In order to be able to win this war, the West has resorted to conjuring up a negative intelligence background that it uses to depict either Moscow or the Muslim countries, said the official.

In line with the approach, the West uses portrays the countries and China as the source of all of the world’s woes, he  noted.

Also in line with the war efforts, the Western intelligence apparatuses manipulate and distort the countries’ successes and advancements, Bikantov noted.

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