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Russia Expresses WTO & WHO Exit Wishes

Graphic of Russian President Vladimir Putin (R) and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy (L)

Russia’s Duma Deputy Speaker, Pyotr Tolstoy on Thursday said Moscow is considering pulling out of a series of international bodies such as the World Trade Organization and the World Health Organization in response to treatment by the West resulting from the war in Ukraine.

Russia says international bodies have neglected their obligations to Moscow.

Pyotr Tolstoy, Russia's Duma deputy speaker, says Moscow’s lawmakers are planning to set up relevant committees in parliament to revisit agreements between the East European nation, the WTO and WHO to evaluate Russia’s legal options.

“Our previous western partners have not fulfilled a series of international obligations, including illegal sanctions against Russia’s foreign reserves, assets of Russian people and trade,” said Tolstoy, adding “We are planning to have relevant committees in our parliament to analyze legal documents of those international organizations to see whether they meet the current interests of Russia which may result in Russia no longer fulfilling some international obligations.”

An increasing number of sanctions were imposed on Russia in the wake of its February 24 invasion of Ukraine by a number of Western nations and multilateral bodies.

Tolstoy went on to say “Russia is a responsible country and has honored our obligations so when we are told those obligations no longer exist and a party violates them, we will not understand on what grounds we should follow them,”

Russia Threatens WHO Pull Out Over Ukraine War
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According to the Russian lawmaker, Moscow will open its doors to Asian and African markets as a means of remedying the predicted impacts of withdrawing from the WTO on the Russian economy.

“The bad thing is that prices of certain goods will go up but the good thing is that we will not be affected by the international market,” said Tolstoy, adding “To some extent we can stabilize the domestic economy and currency which will be a huge advantage for Russia’s economic development.”

Tolstoy continued by emphasizing that Moscow will survive the impact of western sanctions and pulling out of international bodies.

“We have to reshape our economy due to sanctions imposed by the west and we are accelerating the process,” said Tolstoy, adding , “We will rapidly proceed to open our market towards partners in Asia, the Pacific region and Africa to fill the gap caused by sanctions.”