Russia withdrew from the Council of Baltic Sea States (CBSS) due to the “hostile actions” of other members of the organization, declaration Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation. According to the ministry, the Council took “illegal and discriminatory decisions” against Russia.
“Russia has been ‘suspended’ from the work and projects of the CBSS, Belarus’ participation in the Council as an observer has been ‘suspended’,” the Foreign Ministry said.
The Ministry has long believed that “contradictions have arisen” within the Council. Western states wanted to “politicize” the activities of the body and to advance their own ideology within its framework. As a result, “NATO and the European Union states” monopolized the Council and redirected its work “to the detriment of Russian interests”.
“Under these circumstances, the hope of restoring normal work in the Council, which has become increasingly impasse with anti-Russian hatred and lies, does not appear. We consider our country’s presence in CBSS to be inappropriate and inefficient,” he said.
Separately, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs noted that the Council “stealed” the membership fee in Russia from the organization’s budget.
“Actually our contribution to the CBSS budget was stolen – they won’t be returning it, citing sanctions,” the ministry said in a statement.
“The termination of CBSS membership will not affect Russia’s presence in the region. Attempts to get our country out of the Baltic are doomed to failure,” he said.
Russia deported From the Baltic Sea States Council and all related projects in early March. The decision was taken unanimously by all ten members of the Council (Denmark, Estonia, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Poland, Finland, Germany and Sweden). The reason is Russia’s military operation against Ukraine. The Council noted that Moscow grossly violated the fundamental principles of the organization and condemned Russia’s actions.
“Now we need to draw the necessary conclusions. We do not see the possibility of continuing cooperation with the Russian Federation <...>. “Under the current circumstances, Russia should not benefit and should not benefit from CBSS-led cooperation,” he said.
At the same time, Belarus was deprived of observer status. The council explained that it was involved in “Russia’s aggression” by providing its own territory, which meant it was responsible.
The Council declared that Russia’s membership could be regained if cooperation was made without violating the “fundamental principles of international law”.
The Council of Baltic Sea States was established in 1992. In addition to the European states, it includes the European Commission (the EU’s highest executive body). Some states also take part in the Council as observers.
A similar situation occurred with Russia in the Council of Europe before. On February 25, immediately after the start of military action against Ukraine, Russia temporarily lost its membership in the organization’s cabinet and parliamentary assembly. At the same time, the Russian Federation remained a member of the Council.
On March 15, amid a debate in the Parliamentary Assembly about Russia’s actions in Ukraine, the Russian side announced that it would resign from the Council itself. The arguments of the Russian Foreign Ministry were the same – the Western countries monopolized the whole, they pursue an “anti-Russian policy” and their statements about the conflict in Ukraine “have nothing to do with reality”. On the same day, the members of the Council unanimously voted to exclude the Russian Federation.