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Vladimir Lukin advocates development by Russia of an Euro-Atlantic integration policy

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Deputy Speaker of the State Duma from the Yabloko faction Vladimir Lukin, thinks that the recent summit meetings between Russia and the USA, NATO and the European Union represent a "step forward rather than a breakthrough."

In a speech at the international conference "Euro-Atlantic Integration and Russia" in Moscow on May 30, 2002, Lukin noted that "the course towards integration with Europe, including into Euroatlantic civilisation, declared by the Russian leadership, meets Russia's national interests and is the only possible way for Russia's dignified existence in the world politics."

At the same time, the Deputy Speaker thinks that it is important to "develop rather than simply demonstrate" a course towards Russia's integration with the Euro-Atlantic union.

Consequently, Lukin recollected what he considered to be an erroneous "policy of whims" that has been conducted lately by the Russian Federation. By way of an example Lukin referred to the "proposals of the former Prime Minister of the RF Evgeny Primakov to establish in response to the coalition of Western countries some kind of anti-coalition consisting of China, India, Iraq and a number of other countries."

According to the Deputy Speaker, this idea, together with a number of other foreign policy ideas of recent years, "goes absolutely against our national interests."

Vladimir Lukin also noted that in foreign policy Russia "still prefers "bows" [decorations]; whereas China, for example, treats [foreign policy] as the basis, rather than a superstructure." According to Lukin, "pro-Western trends are today more strongly manifested in China than in Russia".

Lukin also thinks that Moscow could apply Chinese experience in its foreign policy, while considering that "the trick increasingly pushed by some political forces in the Russian Federation that implies conducting European foreign policy and a Byzantium domestic policy, won't work in this situation."

According to Lukin, "in terms of Russia's national interests we have to understand that the only way to ensure Russia's increasing participation in the Euroatlantic community requires Russia's domestic policy to comply with European standards."

Based on Interfax reports.

See also:
Russia-EU Relations

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