West aiming to destroy Russia – Moscow

On Thursday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov accused the West of wanting to inflict a long-term defeat on Moscow and lashed out at European Union chief Ursula von der Leyen, who had just arrived in Kyiv. 

"Ursula von der Leyen... said that the outcome of the war should be Russia's defeat, the kind of defeat that Russia cannot restore its economy for decades, for many decades," Lavrov said in remarks broadcast on Russian state television. 

"Is this not racism, Nazism, or an attempt to solve 'the Russian problem'?" Lavrov went on to recall Russia's World War II victory over Nazi Germany. 

The European Commission chief announced earlier Thursday that she had arrived in Kyiv with a team of commissioners and the bloc's top diplomat, a day before a Ukraine-European Union summit in the war-torn country. 

Russian President Vladimir Putin has frequently compared Moscow's "special military operation" in Ukraine to the war against Nazi Germany. 

He began the conflict in Ukraine in February of last year, with the stated goal of "de-Nazifying" the country.

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