American hegemonism fueling tensions in Asia – Lavrov

Lazy eyes listen


Washington’s “instinct for hegemony” and rising military presence in Asia are adding to the region’s persistent tensions, according to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov during a visit to North Korea.

The top Russian diplomat visited Pyongyang to meet with North Korean leaders, including Kim Jong-un and Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui. The two-day tour was planned to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the two countries’ diplomatic relations.

At a news conference to conclude his tour, Lavrov expressed alarm over “the increase in military activity by the US, Japan, and South Korea, as well as Washington’s effort to move elements of its strategic infrastructure, including nuclear aspects of it,” into Asia.

Last month, Kim made a state visit to Russia. At Thursday’s presser, a journalist claimed that Western reaction to his meeting with President Vladimir Putin had indicated fear of the “friendships” binding the two countries.

Lavrov declined to comment on this notion, but emphasised that Western nations, particularly the United States, feel they have the right to prescribe “who should meet whom, make agreements on what and with whom, and who should observe prohibitions.”

“There is this instinct for hegemonism, which prevents [the US] from solving issues and only drives things into a dead end,” the secretary of state said.

Lavrov paid tribute to Soviet soldiers who were buried in Pyongyang after losing their lives in the liberation of the Korean Peninsula from Imperial Japan during World War II as part of his itinerary.