Russia to Defend National Interests 'Persistently but Correctly' - Putin
MOSCOW, July 9 (RIA Novosti) - Russia will always defend its interests "persistently but correctly," Russia's President Vladimir Putin said at the meeting with Russian Civic Chamber members Wednesday.
'We will never turn to isolationism; we will always be part of the global community. [The world community] is complex, non-uniform. We must define our national interests correctly. We have learned to do that, as we are learning to defend them from previous generations, including the generation of the victors [of World War II]. We will do it persistently but correctly,' Putin said.
Putin disagreed with the notion that the West does not want a powerful Russia. 'There are different people and different countries, first of all. Second of all, this is not some peculiarity of today: nobody wants to ever see powerful competitors anywhere, while international life is a competitive battle, it has always been that way, ours is not an exception,' the Russian president said.
Russia's relations with the West have been strained of late in light of the Ukrainian crisis.
The US and the EU, as well as other Western countries, have refused to recognize Crimea's reunification with Russia following a March referendum. The West imposed sanctions against a number of Russian officials, politicians and businessmen, as well as against certain companies. Moscow has labelled the sanctions counterproductive.
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