“Russia’s foreign minister on Wednesday criticized Western policies toward his country, urging European countries to maintain good relations with Moscow despite the Russia-West divisions.

Sergey Lavrov said during a visit to Slovenia that being a member of NATO or the European Union “does not mean it is necessary to avoid contacts with states that are not included in those international organizations,” like Russia.

‘I think it’s absolutely detrimental to push a false choice on any country, which suggests that well, you go either West or East,’ he said. ‘Regrettably, some of our counterparts in the West proceed from precisely this logic when they communicate with countries in Western Balkans, and not only there.'”