OREANDA-NEWS. Moscow is ready to return to normal relations with the EU, despite the current crisis, the choice is up to Brussels, but any development of events cannot be ruled out, said Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

Lavrov, following talks with his Finnish counterpart Pekka Haavisto in St. Petersburg, noted that Russia must be ready for any development of the situation. He notes that the choice here remains with the European Union. Lavrov said: "If the EU decides that relations need to be restored after all and reverses actions to break them, then we will be ready for this too."

At the same time, the diplomat noted, Russia has no problems in relations with individual European countries. As Lavrov said, "Russia is not leaving Europe anywhere, because Moscow has many friends at the level of individual EU countries."

"You shouldn't confuse the European Union with Europe. We are not leaving Europe anywhere. We have many friends in Europe, many like-minded people. We will continue to develop mutually beneficial relations with them," Lavrov said.

Lavrov said last week that Moscow is ready to sever relations with the European Union if there are sanctions on its part that pose risks to sensitive areas of the economy. Later, the press secretary of the President of the Russian Federation Dmitry Peskov said that the meaning of Lavrov's statements was distorted: Russia will not initiate such a break, it wants to develop relations with the EU. Lavrov's words were explained in the same way in the Russian Foreign Ministry.