Russia’s Foreign Minister Lavrov accuses West of colonial mindset, exploiting Global South

In remarks delivered, Lavrov charged that Western powers continue to see this relationship as an opportunity to live at the expense of others and to derive unilateral benefits.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has launched a scathing rebuke of Western nations, accusing them of clinging to a colonialist mentality by exploiting countries in the developing world for their gain instead of pursuing equal partnerships.

In remarks delivered, Lavrov charged that Western powers continue to see this relationship as an opportunity to live at the expense of others and to derive unilateral benefits. He stated the West remains affected by colonialism and neo-colonialism which has driven its dealings with the “Global Majority” of nations in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.

Lavrov’s inflammatory comments amplify the Kremlin’s narrative that the U.S.-led Western order seeks to unfairly dominate other countries and maintain a neo-colonial system of subjugation and resource extraction from the developing world. Several African leaders have recently echoed similar sentiments about feeling caught in the middle of great power rivalries.

However, the United States and its European allies have forcefully pushed back, accusing Russia of using disinformation to cover for its imperialist actions in Ukraine. Western officials insist their vision for the Global South prioritizes self-determination, economic development, and defending the rules-based international order.

As geopolitical tensions remain heightened over the war in Ukraine, both Moscow and Western capitals are vying to gain greater sway and influence across the strategically vital Global South. Lavrov’s latest broadside indicates Russia will increasingly contrast its stance as an anti-colonial partner with the West’s advocacy of democratic values and economic liberalization.

For countries caught in the middle of this renewed great power rivalry, Lavrov’s rhetoric could find fertile ground in regions where memories of imperial subjugation remain fresh. Or it may be dismissed as cynical posturing from a nation replicating neo-colonial patterns of its own. Either way, the widening gulf between Russia and the West seems poised to strain multilateral cooperation on pressing issues like climate change, debt relief and sustainable development goals.