Russia responds to US sanctions not tit for tat, but in a way not harmful to itself, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told an audience of students and teachers at the Foreign Ministry’s MGIMO university on Monday, TASS reports.
"We are not getting hysterical, we do not wish to respond tit for tat," he said. "We do respond to sanctions, we introduce retaliatory restrictive measures but in a way that will not be harmful to ourselves. We target specific personalities who have been accelerating this flywheel of Russophobia, which is utterly unnecessary to the Americans, Europe, or ourselves."
Moscow stays open to talks, Lavrov said.
"At the Russian-US summit in Helsinki there was a normal discussion," he stated.
"The hysteria that followed in the United States following the two presidents’ joint news conference… The US political system should be ashamed of causing such a wave," Lavrov said.
Russia, he said, seeks an equitable dialogue and mutual respect.
"Attempts at talking to us differently would be wrong," Lavrov stated. "As soon as the United States is prepared for a discussion, it will not find us waiting. But as we have seen, US President Donald Trump’s wish to have normal relations with us is blocked by the Russophobic lobby in Washington.