21 September 2017
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AMBASSADOR'S ARTICLES

07.09.2017

The West’s counter-ISIS efforts cost Iraq and Syria dearly (by Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

According to the UN, mass media and NGOs, as a result of air and artillery strikes by the US-led counter-ISIS coalition in Syria, hundreds, perhaps thousands of civilians have died. The number of refugees and temporarily displaced persons from Raqqa has reached 200,000. At present, there are still 25,000-40,000 civilians in the city, which until 2013 was inhabited by almost 300,000 people.
Since January, the coalition has carried out more than two thousand air strikes, with 12-16 sorties a day in June-July. Almost constantly Raqqa is pounded by howitzer and rocket artillery. There is information about the use of white phosphorus munitions. The city infrastructure, including schools, hospitals, government agencies and at least a quarter of the housing stock, has been almost completely destroyed. The water and electricity supply has been disrupted. Residents have found themselves between a hammer and an anvil, turning into hostages of ISIS terrorists and the US-led alliance. There are no exit corridors for civilians, as well as organized delivery of humanitarian aid.
Given the scale of the fighting and the experience of the US-supported operation in Mosul, there is every reason to believe that the actual number of victims and destruction of Raqqa will be much greater than the currently circulating official data. Contrary to the assertions of the US military, independent experts claim that since October 2016 only in Mosul 10,000-40,000 civilians were killed, and more than 100,000 were injured. It looks like trying to inflict maximum damage to the local population, especially the Arabs. What is the purpose of all this? To humiliate and marginalize them, or to cause the antagonism between the Arabs and the Syrian Kurds?
Today, the West still refuses to recognize an indisputable success of counter-terrorist efforts of the Syrian army, achieved with the support of the Russian Air Force. The sanctions imposed on Damascus deny humanitarian aid to hundreds of thousands of Syrians in liberated areas. Against the background of the approaching liberation of the eastern regions of Syria, the West deliberately ignores a historic chance to unite into a truly broad counter-terrorism coalition in the region, as put forward by President Vladimir Putin in September 2015.




LATEST EVENTS

08.09.2017 - SCO sets standards for countering extremism (by Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

In June 2017, the leaders of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) signed the SCO Convention on Countering Extremism, which will help strengthen the international legal framework to address new challenges and threats as well as increase the effectiveness of cooperation between relevant authorities of the member states and to improve legislation in this area.


07.09.2017 - No alternative to a peace settlement on the Korean Peninsula (by Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

Russia is deeply concerned over the situation on the Korean Peninsula, where confrontation is moving into its hottest phase than ever before. North Korea continues to violate UN Security Council resolutions.


16.08.2017 - Iran has the right to develop its missile programme (by Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

The launch by Iran on 27 July of the missile “Simurg” caused a lot of speculations and aimed at putting additional pressure on the country under the false pretext.


05.08.2017 - DPRK tested medium-range, not intercontinental ballistic missile

The latest developments on the Korean Peninsula have become a matter of a grave concern against the backdrop of yet another launch of a ballistic missile by the DPRK on 28 July in violation of the UN Secretary Council resolutions. But the bellicose rhetoric will not produce a peaceful negotiated solution.


02.08.2017 - Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons: playing with fire (by Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

On July 7, the work on the draft Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (PNW) was completed in New York. Russia considers this Treaty as counterproductive and potentially dangerous, which brings humanity no closer to a world free of nuclear weapons and threatens to damage the existing non-proliferation regimes. The international community has already created universal mechanisms, based on the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), which allow a gradual cut of nuclear arsenals. At the same time, it provides for the strengthening of international stability and ensuring equal security for all states, including non-nuclear. We are convinced that the NPT contains all the necessary provisions in this sphere that must be applied consistently.


27.07.2017 - The role of nuclear weapons in the Russian military strategy: setting the record straight (by Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

We continue to see efforts to blame Russia for allegedly lowering the threshold for the use of nuclear weapons. Against the backdrop of current anti-Russian hysterics and groundless accusations of “aggression”, “destabilization”, “interference”, etc., this adds to the false picture. Let’s set the record straight.


27.07.2017 - Russia’s efforts in Syria: we invite all to join (by Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

Russia continues its efforts in Syria aimed at normalizing the humanitarian situation and eliminating terrorism in the region. Along with fighting ISIS, al-Nusra Front in all its reincarnations, and other terrorist organizations, recognized as such by the UN Security Council, Russia also contributes to establishing conditions to secure the ceasefire between the Syrian government troops and the opposition. Starting from June, Russia has supported the signing of agreements on ceasefire with representatives of 508 towns and villages. Total number of reconciled inhabited areas has reached an unprecedented number of 2,043.


26.07.2017 - Khan Sheikhoun: we must establish the truth (by Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

The question of what really happened in Khan Shaykhun on April 4 still remains unanswered. Russia’s critical attitude to the methods of work and to the conclusions of the report of the OPCW Fact-Finding Mission (FFM) in Syria on this matter is well known. For three months of work, the FFM could only prove the use of sarin, thus confirming the findings of the Syrians themselves, who managed to obtain samples onsite. We believe there are fundamental flaws in the work of the Mission, including the following: the inquiry was conducted remotely, without visiting the scene of the incident; the CWC’s basic chain-of-custody principle hasn’t been honoured; in fact, the main question remained unanswered – under what circumstances and how exactly the chemical agent was deployed.


19.07.2017 - Real actions, not sanctions, needed to save public health in Syria (by Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko for RT)

The humanitarian situation in Syria remains complex. According to the UN, 13,5 million Syrians or more than half of the country’s population need help. Of the UN 2017 humanitarian appeal for Syria of $3,4 bn, so far $702 mln has been allocated by donors. The Syrian public health system, which was once considered the best in the region, has now significantly deteriorated and its state is of particular concern. There is limited access of the population to the medical and sanitary services, and the immunization from the main diseases remains at a very low level. As of the end of June, 17 cases of poliomyelitis were registered in the country. The threat of epidemic remains high. Due to the lack of clean drinking water, outbreaks of dysentery, cholera and typhoid fever are ever more possible.


07.07.2017 - The chemical incident in Khan Sheikhoun: why is the West not interested in the truth? (by Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko)

There are speculations about the chemical incident in Khan Sheikhoun on April 4 flared up by the recent report by the OPCW Fact-Finding Mission in Syria (FFMS). On the surface, this report looks somewhat respectable, has been welcomed by some countries as a “highly professional” piece of work and even hailed to have provided incontestable evidence of Damascus’ guilt for the “chemical attack”. Russia’s assessments of this document are much more reserved. Its quality leaves much to be desired and let me explain why we think so.



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