Argentina’s President Says He Will Maintain Dialogue With Putin
01:37 GMT 23.01.2023 (Updated: 11:17 GMT 23.01.2023)
© AP Photo / Natacha PisarenkoArgentina's President Alberto Fernandez speaks during a news conference, with Spain's Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez, outside La Casa Rosada during Sanchez's one day visit to Buenos Aires, Argentina, Wednesday, June 9, 2021
© AP Photo / Natacha Pisarenko
MEXICO CITY (Sputnik) - Argentine President Alberto Fernandez says he does not intend to cut dialogue with Russian President Vladimir Putin, although Buenos Aires does not support Moscow’s special military operation in Ukraine.
"I haven’t stopped talking to Putin, but we never supported the invasion. The last time I spoke with him, when he called me to congratulate me on Argentina's victory in the [FIFA World] Cup, I said again that it was necessary to sit down [at the negotiation table] to resolve this issue," Fernandez said in a Sunday interview with the Folha de S.Paulo daily.
Russian Ambassador to Buenos Aires Dmitry Feoktistov said in December that Russia's bilateral relations with Argentina "withstood and passed the test of time," as evident from the fact that Putin called Fernandez to congratulate Argentina on winning the FIFA World Cup 2022.
"Argentina did not join the sanctions against Russia. Despite criticizing the so-called Russian invasion, Argentina has always stated at the highest level that the sanctions against Russia were illegitimate, as they were adopted bypassing the UN Security Council, and ineffective, as they cannot prompt conflict resolution," Feoktistov said.
Nonetheless, the ambassador pointed out that it was due to sanctions that trade between Russia and Argentina had dropped 30% in nine months, to $711 million.
Russia launched its special military operation in Ukraine on February 24, after the Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics appealed for help in defending themselves against Ukrainian provocations. In response to Russia’s operation, Western countries have rolled out a comprehensive sanctions campaign against Moscow and have been supplying weapons to Ukraine.