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26.12.2016 - Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s telephone conversation with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu

On December 26, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov spoke by phone with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu at the latter’s initiative. Mr Cavusoglu expressed to Mr Lavrov his condolences over the Russian plane crash near Sochi. The ministers continued their exchange of opinions on the developments in Syria, placing emphasis on stopping hostilities on its entire territory and intensifying the fight against terrorist groups in accordance with the principles of the Joint Statement by the Foreign Ministers of Russia, Turkey and Iran.

25.12.2016 - Ushakov medals for Arctic Convoys veterans presented

On 24 December, Counsellor of the Embassy Konstantin Shlykov presented the Ushakov medals to the Arctic Convoys veterans Mr Laurence Oseman and Mr Robin Alfred Charles Owen who were awarded this military honour by Decree of the President of the Russian Federation for their personal courage and bravery displayed in WWII.

25.12.2016 - President Putin instructed Prime Minister to set up a state commission over the Tu-154 crash in Sochi

President Putin instructed Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev to set up a state commission to investigate the causes of the Tu-154 plane crash in Sochi. The President expressed his deepest condolences to the families and friends of the crash victims.

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.

22.12.2016 - Why the elites blame post-truth politics for their failures, by Ambassador Yakovenko for RBTH, published 22 December

Establishment leaders in Europe and America need a reality check and to address voters' genuine concerns in a globalized world. The year 2016 has seen truly epic failures of mainstream politics and media, most significantly at the British EU referendum and the American election. In both cases seasoned analysts could not see beyond their Westminster or Capitol bubbles and foresee the outcomes. Enraged as they were, they chose to blame outside forces, often pointing the finger at Moscow, which supposedly has more influence on Western voters than home politicians. More generally, they blamed their failures on “post-truth politics”, ie, assuming that new-wave politicians (and their line-up crosses the Cold War divide in the Euro-Atlantic) run fake news stories and take advantage of a total breakdown of trust in elites and their institutions. Indeed, progressively, we have been seeing the last of established politicians, and institutions falling into disarray and irrelevance.

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.

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