Question: Ukraine has just held parliamentary elections. Does Moscow recognise them?
Sergey Lavrov: The elections are being monitored by observers, including OSCE observers, and there are Russian representatives among them. This time, Russia’s Federal Assembly did not send a separate observer team to the elections, so we will wait for the conclusions of the international OSCE team.
The elections seem to be valid, though not in every part of Ukraine. I think Russia will recognise their results as it is critically important for Ukraine to obtain, at long last, a leadership that will not engage in petty infighting and drag the country from east to west and back again, but one that will address real Ukrainian problems. Ukraine needs a government that will think how the nation should regain unity. It needs a government to guarantee an equal status to all Ukrainian citizens irrespective of the language they speak and political convictions they have. No one should be victimised on political and other grounds, as has been the case until recently.
Question: Considering the latest updates, the Verkhovna Rada will be a multi-party house as several political blocs have made it to parliament, including the Radical Party of Oleg Lyashko. You warned in Norway how dangerous ultranationalism is for Europe. How would you explain that bloc’s success?