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23.12.2016 - Vladimir Putin’s annual news conference

Last year, Russia’s GDP, which is the key indicator, dropped 3.7 percent. This year GDP also declined, but we are not talking about a contraction of this magnitude any more. Initially we believed that the GDP would fall by about 1 percent, but this figure was later adjusted to 0.7 percent and then again to 0.6 percent. In November, national GDP inched up. Overall for the year we are expecting a decrease in GDP in the range of 0.5 percent – 0.6 percent. GDP increased thanks to growth in industries of the real economy, such as machine building, truck manufacturing, heavy machine building, manufacturing of road-building equipment, transport machine building, the chemical industry, light industry, processing and, of course, agriculture. Growth in agriculture was substantial – 2.4 percent last year. We expected 3.2 percent growth this year but the current figure is 4.1 percent and the yearend figure will be at least 4 percent. I think this is a very good trend and we must try to maintain it.

23.12.2016 - Comment by Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova following the latest expansion of US sanctions on Russia

We regret that the US government has decided once again to expand the anti-Russian sanctions in the context of the events in Ukraine. The obsession of the Administration of Barack Obama with putting pressure on Russia by any means causes bewilderment. Instead of focusing on coordinating efforts in the fight against the new challenges of our times, first and foremost terrorism and extremism, the White House keeps trying to painfully “punish” us.

23.12.2016 - Press release on the ASEAN foreign ministers’ statement on the murder of Russian Ambassador to Turkey Andrey Karlov

Press release on the ASEAN foreign ministers’ statement on the murder of Russian Ambassador to Turkey Andrey Karlov, 23 December 2016

22.12.2016 - Expanded meeting of the Defence Ministry Board

The President took part in the annual expanded meeting of the Defence Ministry Board.

22.12.2016 - Andrei Karlov awarded the title of Hero of the Russian Federation

Vladimir Putin signed Executive Order awarding Andrei Karlov the title of the Hero of the Russian Federation.

21.12.2016 - Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova’s response to a media question about the opening of a US military advanced storage facility in the Netherlands

Question: Could you comment on the information that a US army warehouse was reopened in the Netherlands, and US heavy military equipment is being redeployed to it? Maria Zakharova: Indeed, we couldn’t help but notice the reports about the resumption of work of a US military advanced storage facility with US arms and heavy military equipment, including tanks, infantry carriers and self-propelled artillery. It seems that the West is seeking to make the military and political deterrence of Russia a long-term effort.

21.12.2016 - Declaration of the Permanent Council OSCE on the deadly terrorist attack against the Russian Ambassador to Turkey, Vienna, 20 December, 2016

Recalling the recent adoption of the Ministerial Council Declaration on Strengthening OSCE Efforts to Prevent and Counter Terrorism (MC.DOC/1/16 of 9 December 2016), condemn in the strongest terms the terrorist attack in Ankara, Turkey, on 19 December, which resulted in the assassination of the Ambassador of the Russian Federation, H.E. Andrey Karlov.

20.12.2016 - Joint Statement by the Foreign Ministers of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Russian Federation and the Republic of Turkey on agreed steps to revitalize the political process to end the Syrian conflict, Moscow, 20 December 2016

The Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Russian Federation and the Republic of Turkey, meeting in Moscow on 20 December 2016, agreed on the following.

19.12.2016 - On the assassination of our friend and colleague Andrey Karlov

We are shocked by the repugnant murder of Russia’s Ambassador to Turkey Andrey Karlov, our very good friend and an outstanding diplomat. It was hard to imagine how such an outrage could happen. It is a reminder for all of us that no person or country is immune to terrorism. Ankara is not far from conflict areas and the diplomats working there have always been on the frontline. Mr Karlov’s posting to Ankara was no random choice. A person with highest diplomatic qualities was needed there, as regards both professionalism and active civic stance. His experience at the MFA and in high positions abroad helped him to make a major contribution to stabilization of the Russia-Turkey relationship and its active development in today’s challenging conditions.

19.12.2016 - Statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs

On 19 December the Russian Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Turkey, Mr Andrey Karlov, was killed in the result of the terrorist attack. We utterly condemn this inhumane crime aimed at ruining the collective effort to the soonest possible political settlement in Syria as well as the recent normalization of the Russia-Turkey relations. We expect the Turkish authorities to cooperate closely with the Russian investigation to thoroughly inquest all details of this barbaric crime, find and punish the culprits and to take the most effective measures to ensure security of Russian citizens, foreign mission and diplomatic staff. The Russian side is ready to do our part in cooperation with the Turkish law-enforcement authorities to bring those guilty to justice. The Foreign Ministry expresses the deepest condolences to the relatives and friends of Mr Karlov. The memory of this outstanding Russian diplomat will remain in the hearts of all who knew him forever. This tragedy obliges us to put even more effort in a fight against terrorism in all its forms.

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