Russia has described the blocking of airspace by three Eastern European countries for its Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s planned flight to Serbia as “hostile action”. Moscow Presidential Office spokesman Dmitry Peskov told the press on Monday such actions could cause problems in planning high-level diplomatic meetings. But they would not prevent Russia from maintaining contacts with friendly countries.

Lavrov himself spoke of an unprecedented action. His visit to Belgrade, which was planned for Monday, failed due to resistance from several of Serbia’s neighboring countries. No explanation for this behavior has yet been received.

Bulgaria, North Macedonia and Montenegro had denied the Russian government plane a flight through their airspaces. Serbia and Russia maintain a close partnership. At the same time, Serbia is striving to join the EU.

Lavrov announced that he would now invite his Serbian interlocutors to Moscow. No one can destroy Russian-Serbian ties. “If a visit by the Russian foreign minister to Serbia is viewed in the West as something approaching a threat on a universal level, then clearly things are pretty bad in the West.”