Impossible to isolate vast country as Russia: Putin warns amid West's sanctions | World News - Hindustan Times
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Impossible to isolate vast country as Russia: Putin warns amid West's sanctions

Written by Sharangee Dutta | Edited by Chandrashekar Srinivasan, New Delhi
Apr 12, 2022 06:35 PM IST

Russian President Vladimir Putin travelled to the Vostochny Cosmodrome in Russia's Amur region, which is located in the far east of the country, earlier in the day, to meet Belarusian counterpart Alexander Lukashenko and mark Russia's annual Cosmonautics Day.

Vladimir Putin on Tuesday cited the success of the erstwhile Soviet space programme to claim attempts to isolate a 'vast country' like Russia are doomed to fail. The Russian president's comment comes amid a renewed flood of sanctions by the United States, United Kingdom, European Union and other nations to deter Moscow from its war on Ukraine.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, his Belarusian counterpart Alexander Lukashenko and director general of Roscosmos Dmitry Rogozin visit the construction site of the Amur launch complex for Angara rockets at the Vostochny Cosmodrome in Amur Region, Russia April 12, 2022. (Sputnik/Mikhail Klimentyev/Kremlin via REUTERS)
Russian President Vladimir Putin, his Belarusian counterpart Alexander Lukashenko and director general of Roscosmos Dmitry Rogozin visit the construction site of the Amur launch complex for Angara rockets at the Vostochny Cosmodrome in Amur Region, Russia April 12, 2022. (Sputnik/Mikhail Klimentyev/Kremlin via REUTERS)

Speaking to Russian state television, Putin said the Soviet space programme was evidence his country could achieve massive leaps forward despite tough conditions.

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"We don't intend to be isolated. It is impossible to severely isolate anyone in the modern world - especially such a vast country as Russia," he said.

Putin travelled to the Vostochny Cosmodrome in Russia's Amur region, which is located in the far east of the country, to meet Belarusian counterpart Alexander Lukashenko and mark Russia's annual Cosmonautics Day.

The two leaders toured the space port, where Putin also met Roscosmos' head Dmitry Rogozin, Russian cosmonauts and cosmodrome builders, according to Sky News.

"Why an earth are we getting so worried about these sanctions?” Lukashenko asked, according to Russian state television.

Referring to Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin - the first human being to travel to outer space - Putin said sanctions imposed at the time were 'total (and) isolation was complete but the Soviet Union was still first in space'.

Gagarin's achievement came over six decades ago, during the Cold War era.

Putin's comments about defying Western sanctions came after he said the war in Ukraine - which Moscow calls a 'special military operation' - was to protect Russia. He said a clash with Ukraine's anti-Russian forces was inevitable and that Russia could no longer 'tolerate genocide in Donbas'.

Donbas consists of the pro-Russian and separatist-backed Donetsk and Luhansk regions where tensions have been high since 2014, when Russia annexed the Crimean peninsula.

In the last talks between Russia and Ukraine, Msocow made it clear that their stand on Crimea and Donbas remained unchanged.

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