Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov speaking at a news conference on the sidelines of the 78th United Nations General Assembly in New York, US. (Photo: Reuters)

Russia says West ‘directly at war’ against them in Ukraine

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov accused the Western powers of being “directly involved” in the war in Ukraine against Moscow.

Western powers, through their support to Ukraine, have effectively entered direct fighting against Moscow, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Saturday (local time).

“You can call it anything you want, but they are fighting with us, they are straight-up fighting with us. We call it a hybrid war but that doesn’t change things,” Lavrov told a news conference at the United Nations (UN).

US President Joe Biden has repeatedly said he was seeking to avoid a direct confrontation with Russia, a fellow nuclear power, and will not send American troops. His administration has also distanced itself from Ukrainian attacks into Russia itself.

But Lavrov pointed to the billions of dollars in Western military equipment provided to Kyiv since Russia attacked last year, as well as US and British intelligence support and the presence of Western military advisors.

Westerners are “de facto fighting against us, using the hands and bodies of Ukrainians,” Lavrov said.

“I think everybody present here who pays at least some attention to the situation in Ukraine knows very well that Americans, Britons and others are fighting, first of all, through providing more and more weapons,” he said.

He also pointed to the presence of Western mercenaries in Ukraine. The US and several other Western governments have discouraged their people from travelling to Ukraine and such fighters have gone on their own.

Lavrov was taking part in the annual United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), where all eyes were on Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who flew to New York to appeal for greater support against the invasion.

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