Addressing the Lord Mayor’s banquet on Monday, UK Prime Minister Theresa May accused Moscow of meddling in other countries’ elections and spreading fake news, adding that despite “the scale and nature” of Russia’s actions she hopes to avoid the return to the atmosphere of the Cold War era.
LONDON (Sputnik) — The United Kingdom wants to maintain productive relations with Russia and avoid the atmosphere of the Cold War era confrontation, UK Prime Minister Theresa May said in a major foreign policy speech at the Lord Mayor’s Banquet at Mansion House in London late on Monday. But first she accused Russia of meddling in other states’ affairs, spreading “fake stories” in media and aggressive policies.
The Prime Minister pledged to protect West’s interests and “take the necessary action to counter Russian activity” if the country continues on its current “path.”
“But this not where we want to be and not the relationship with Russia we want. We do not want to return to the Cold War or to be in a state of perpetual confrontation… Russia can, and I hope one day will, choose this different path. But for as long as Russia does not, we will act together to protect our interests and the international order on which they depend,” May said.
The prime minister’s remarks come in contrast to comments this weekend by US President Donald Trump, who noted that the investigation of “Russian interference,” which is now being conducted by the US Special Prosecutor and in Congress, is an obstacle to the establishment of relations between Moscow and Washington and “the whole thing was set up by the Democrats”. He also expressed his readiness to cooperate with the Russian counterpart.
Russia has repeatedly denied accusations of interference in US elections, with Russian presidential press secretary Dmitry Peskov describing them as “absolutely unsubstantiated.”
Boris Johnson, the UK foreign secretary, is expected to visit Moscow before the end of the year.