Medvedev: ‘One can criticise anything within the country’

Deputy Chairman of the Russian Security Council Dmitry Medvedev gave a long interview to RIA Novosti and RT, during which he spoke about the course of the special operation in Ukraine, sanctions, and rubles payments for gas. Read the details in the material of Realnoe Vremya.

Ukraine should “be our normal neighbour”

The Russian special operation in Ukraine is proceeding according to the plan approved by the Supreme Commander-in-Chief, Russian President Vladimir Putin, and will continue until it reaches its goals, Medvedev stated.

“These goals relate to the future of Ukraine, the status of Ukraine as a neutral state — a state that does not pursue an anti-Russian policy, a state that is not militarised, and a state that should be our normal neighbour. Therefore, until the results of demilitarisation and denazification of Ukraine are achieved, the operation must continue — as it was conceived by the president of the state, as it was decided," he said.

According to him, it is normal to criticise the authorities, but it is a betrayal to pursue an anti-state line during the military special operation.

“When people go abroad and begin to criticise their state, you know, there is also a cultural code, by the way, which is shared in almost all countries. One can criticise anything within the country, but if you go abroad, it's not very right to criticise your country," Medvedev said.

“Even the decisions of the Constitutional Court are not holy scripture”

Medvedev noted that there are no restrictions on the return of death penalty in Russia now:

“There are different ways to treat the death penalty. Naturally, the points of view have always been opposite. But at least we can say the following now: the motivation for the adoption of a number of decisions of the Constitutional Court, without any doubt, was the participation of our country in the conventions of the Council of Europe. Now these conventions have lost their force for us," the interlocutor said.

He noted that now the international grounds have disappeared, but there are internal legal positions of the Constitutional Court, which are based on the current criminal situation. He explained that even the decisions of the Constitutional Court can change.

“Because even the decisions of the Constitutional Court are not holy scripture, they can be changed. And there have been such periods in the history of our country. Let me remind you that after the war, the Soviet Union abolished the use of the death penalty. It didn't last long. The death penalty was returned fairly quickly. This was due to a high increase in violent crimes, including homicides. I do not know what will happen in the future.

“The hope that by restricting Russian businesses they will somehow influence the authorities are absolutely meaningless”

The West cannot influence the authorities through restrictions on Russian businesses, said the deputy chairman of the Security Council.

“The one who is engaged in the management of the state, first of all, focuses on the interests of the whole country, on the interests of the people of Russia. The one who is engaged in managing his or her own business (this is a very important task), he or she is engaged only in this. Therefore, the hope that by restricting Russian businesses they will somehow influence the authorities, they are absolutely meaningless, they are just silly," he said.

According to him, businesses in principle cannot influence the authorities:

“Let's ask ourselves the question: is anyone from this big business at least to some extent able to influence a small fraction, an iota on the position of the country's leadership? I'm telling you straight out: no, no way.

With its restrictions, the West is trying to turn Russians against the authorities, 'hurt them' and 'try to turn them against the course of the state leadership'.

“But it seems to me that the people who generate these decisions, they absolutely do not understand our mentality, they do not understand the worldview of a Russian person in the broad sense of the word. They do not understand the motivations that when such pressure is exerted — and this pressure is not on big entrepreneurs, not on big businesses, this pressure is on everyone — there is a consolidation of the society," Medvedev believes.

“So what do they want?"

Speaking about the calculations for gas in rubles, he said that there is a direct logic in this.

“It seems to me that this is an obvious thing. We were told: 'Guys, we are closing correspondent positions to your commercial banks, settlements in dollars and euros are unacceptable, SWIFT cannot be used in relation to sub-sanctioned banks — at least some of them.' So what do they want?"

According to Medvedev, Russia should prepare for the reorientation of the energy market, which occurs every 50-70 years, but now our wealth is oil and gas, and we need to trade them, earn income.

Realnoe Vremya follows the events. Read the details in a special story of the online newspaper.

Daria Pinegina