In an interview with the BBC, Russia's Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, said the United States punished first and looked at the evidence second -- exclaiming Russo-American relations were worse now than during the Cold War -- because during the Cold War, unlike now, there were open channels of communication.
He described the present situation in the harshest of terms, saying western nations were practicing 'genocide by sanctions.' In regards to the chemical attacks in Syria, Lavrov implied the US was signaling terrorist groups to carry out these attacks, or inviting them, by offering them an incentive in the form of military support.
“When some time ago the three western countries, who are leading this crazy campaign said: ‘if Assad uses chemical weapons then we would use force.’ I believe that was a signal to the bad guys, including the White Helmets to stage a provocation,” Lavrov said. “Now after they stuck on April 14, they say again if you do this again we will use force again – this is another invitation to the opposition; to the extremists to resume fighting, which they did already. They tried to attack Damascus immediately after the strike.”
The Russian RTSI is -20% from the February highs.