Despite being under US sanctions, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and other high-level diplomats of the Russian UN delegation will be allowed to travel to New York after Washington has granted them visas.
According to a Russian diplomatic source, Lavrov will travel to New York next week for the United Nations’ annual gathering of world leaders, the UN General Assembly (UNGA), but with half the delegation Moscow requested.
Although the main event of this UNGA session will be the ‘High-Level week’ from September 20 to 26, which will be attended by many world leaders and foreign ministers, the 77th session of UNGA opened on Sept. 13.
Earlier on Tuesday, Russian president Vladimir Putin’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov accused Washington of breaking its obligations by delaying the granting of visas but expressed hope that the United States will deliver on its duties, stressing that Washington must grant visas to everyone scheduled to attend the UNGA.
Russian Foreign Ministry also added in its statement that Russia is expecting a prompt resolution of logistical issues around the arrival of Russia’s representatives to the US.
It previously repeatedly criticized Washington for refusing to grant visas to the Russian diplomats to attend the assembly’s session, slamming at the same time the “illegal sanctions” the US has imposed on Russian diplomats.
Russia’s Permanent Representative to the U.N. Vasily Nebenzya urged UN Secretary-General António Guterres earlier this month to help speed up the process of obtaining visas, which had still not been issued on Sunday.
Lavrov emphasized at the time that Guterres has the duty to ensure the participation of all delegations in the UN’s activities, including the UNGA.
Following the launch of Russia’s military offensive in Ukraine in February, the US State Department imposed personal sanctions on several high-level Russian officials, including President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.