And then it was Lavrov’s turn to ring the bell, and he did so for several minutes, repeating his country’s frequent claims that Kyiv has long oppressed Russian speakers and that Western support for Ukraine is a threat to Moscow. . All the while, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba watched.
In that short moment, the world watched something rare: the best diplomats from two warring nations in the same room.
They didn’t speak to each other, instead throwing barbs at – or in front of – each other. Kuleba even joked ahead of the meeting that he would maintain “social distancing”.
Lavrov said US policy towards Ukrainian President Volodymr Zelenskyy’s government was based on the reasoning that “he’s a son of a bitch, but he’s our son of a bitch”. Kuleba then berated Russia for “inappropriate slang”.
And then the moment ended as quickly as it began. As soon as Lavrov finished speaking, he left in a flash.
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