National Assembly speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanim speaking at Russia's upper house.

Kuwait and Russia’s friendly relationship needs to be taken to the heights of partnership and integration, Kuwait’s chief lawmaker Marzouq Al-Ghanim told Russia’s upper house on Monday.

Bilateral relations between the two, which began in 1963, have been “distinguished” in spite of the difficulties due to the Cold War period, which polarized nations in East or West camps, said the National Assembly Speaker.

Al-Ghanim’s three-day visit, in response to Federation Council Chairwoman Valentina Matviyenko’s invitation, comes to generate “more solid and deeper-rooted” relations, he said.”I am not speaking about relations that are just political, economic or related to energy cooperation.

I am talking about cultural, art-related, academic and sports-related ties.”We want to learn from Russia’s soft power, from its universities, scientific and educational institutions, from its sports and youth-related institutions,” he added, mentioning his admiration for the great works of Russian writers and thinkers, like Tolstoy, Pushkin and Chekhov.

The chief lawmaker lamented the “obstacles, lack of cohesion and misunderstandings due to distance and inaccurate portrayals” between Russia and the Arab region.Both need to work “collectively and seriously” in the face of global injustices like terrorism and Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories, he added.

“Desperation, poverty, loss of hope and identity, class separation, lack of governance, suppression, the spread of hate speech and xenophobia are all forms of terrorism.”The Palestinian people are being targeted through these means on a day-to-day basis,” he said, in reference to Israel’s occupation of their lands.

On this, Al-Ghanim commended Russia’s “principal and solid” role in support of Palestinian and Middle East affairs, particularly its veto against a resolution that recognizes illegal Israeli sovereignty over the occupied Golan Heights.”This stance (by Russia) is one we appreciate and are grateful for,” Al-Ghanim highlighted.

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