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Russia criticises EU’s handling of refugee crisis


Moscow -Sergei Lavrov, Russia’s foreign minister on Tuesday criticised the European Union’s (EU) handling of the refugee crisis in Western Europe.

He said that the bloc was culpable for causing the conflicts that led to the mass migration.

“Countries that are responsible for unleashing conflicts should have responsibility for providing humanitarian aid to their victims,” Lavrov said.

Speaking in Moscow at a meeting with Kristalina Georgieva, European Commission Vice President, Lavrov said the EU’s mechanical approach of throwing money at the refugee problem would not resolve it.

The European Union is struggling to cope with a large influx of people fleeing conflict zones in the Middle East and Northern Africa.

The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) estimates that more than 350,000 people had migrated to the EU this year.

Russia staunchly opposed the Western-backed overthrow of Libyan leader Moamer Gaddafi, the US-led invasion of Iraq and the West’s current support for rebels in Syria.

The power vacuum that created by these conflicts had led to radical militant groups gaining considerable power, particularly the terrorist organisation, Islamic State in Syria and Iraq.

Russia recently boosted its role as mediator in the Syrian conflict, as it seeks to protect Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, one of Russia’s closest allies in the region.
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Russian President, Vladimir Putin said last week that the Syrian refugees arriving in Europe were primarily fleeing the Islamic State, not al-Assad’s regime. (dpa/NAN)

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