26 April 2018
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London: 18:09

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SPEECHES, INTERVIEWS, ARTICLES

19.06.2014

IRAQ: TIME TO DRAW PROPER CONCLUSION (by Ambassador Yakovenko, for Russia Today)

Extremely acute and tense situation is continuing in Iraq. According to incoming reports, ISIL militants are attempting to extend the area under their control. Casualties are multiplying; hundreds of thousands of refugees have left their homes. A lot of armaments and military equipment has fallen into the hands of extremists. Bandits have opened prisons, setting hundreds of detainees free, including those who were convicted for terrorist activities. As a result, there is a clear danger of emergence of the region-scale outbreak of terrorism that will threaten not only Syria and Iraq but the whole international community.
Russia strongly condemns the terrorists' appalling criminal acts and express support for the government and political groups in Iraq as they resist the ISIL militants by all available means. It is vital to consolidate the efforts of all participants of the Iraqi internal political process on a basis of fighting against international terrorism and extremism, and preserving the Iraqi state. As the UN Security Council's Chairman, Russia is also working towards the mobilization of the international community to effectively confront terrorist challenges gaining wide regional dimension.
Our western partners are right to emphasize the importance of taking a strong stand against extremists. But their attempts to present the current developments in Iraq as a result of the international community's “inaction” in Syria are pitiful. They are “blind” to see a direct cause-and-effect link between the growth of international terrorism on Iraqi soil and the unleashing of the war in that country in 2003.
Nevertheless, there is no doubt that those who invaded Iraq over 10 years ago and who continue to impose their decisions and will on the people of the region largely contributed to the launch of the processes of destabilization, which results are clear today in the entire Middle East. The same goes to the self-serving and biased approaches to the Syrian crisis, specifically financing and delivering weaponry to armed opposition groups, including those associated with al-Qaeda. Opportunism and double standards as regards actions of the same terrorist group in Iraq and Syria will eventually play into the hands of international extremists. That is why it would be a huge mistake to seize the ISIL-led offensive in Iraq by forcing it towards neighboring Syria. Fighting against terrorism should be comprehensive and indiscriminate.
The surge of terrorist activities in Iraq, as well as the continuing attacks of extremists in Syria confirms the topicality of the appeal announced at the G8 summit last year in Lough Erne regarding the need to consolidate the efforts of the Syrian government and opposition to decisively confront terrorists. We should recall that, as is known, the Syrian Government delegation insisted during the first round of inter-Syrian negotiations in Geneva that the joint fight against terror was a priority. Unfortunately, these appeals were ignored.
The experience of the recent developments in Syria, Iraq and other Near and Middle East countries should make us draw the proper conclusion regarding the danger and inadmissibility of flirting with extremists, using double standards and interfering, including by force, in internal processes in sovereign states.




LATEST EVENTS

21.04.2018 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's talking points at the Press Conference, 20 April 2018

Since we met last time a lot of events took place: - Military strikes of the United States, UK and France against Syria in violation of the international law - Mission by OPCW inspectors to Douma - Speech of Prime Minister May in Parliament in support of the British aggression against Syria - Special meeting of the OPCW Executive Council (18 April 2018) - New developments in the classified case of Salisbury poisoning of Skripal family - No meaningful developments on the Glushkov case - and Cyber security threats I plan to comment all these issues. And I will be happy to answer all our questions, if you have any.


17.03.2018 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's interview for "Mail on Sunday" (full text)

Q: Bearing in mind that the US, France and Germany have said they agree with Britain that all the evidence suggests the attacks in Salisbury were the responsibility of the Russian state, what credibility can be placed on the denials issued by the Russian Government? A:We don't know if UK presented any evidence to US, France and Germany - highly likely none - but if they did, why not present it through the channels outlined in the Chemical Weapons Convention? Universal legal principle is presumption of innocence, and the burden of proof lies with the British Government. Its record includes the Iraq WMD dossier - you will remember that at some point doubting US and UK claims was considered a wild conspiracy theory. It is not any more.


26.01.2018 - Main foreign policy outcomes of 2017

In 2017, Russian diplomacy addressed multidimensional tasks to ensure national security and create a favourable external environment for our country's progressive development. Russia maintained an independent foreign policy, promoted a unifying agenda, and proposed constructive solutions to international problems and conflicts. It developed mutually beneficial relations with all interested states, and played an active role in the work of the UN, multilateral organisations and forums, including the G20, BRICS, the SCO, the OSCE, and the CSTO. Among other things, Russian policy has sought to prevent the destabilisation of international relations, and this responsible policy has met with broad understanding in the international community.


17.01.2018 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the unveiling of memorial plaque in Sayes Court Park

Dear Mayor, Dear Councillors, Lady Joan, Ladies and gentlemen, It is now 320 years ago that a truly remarkable man set foot in Deptford. As you know, the Russian Tsar Peter, later named the Great, visited Western Europe in 1697—1698 under the nickname of Peter Mikhailov, with his Grand Embassy. He was eager to find out about the latest achievements in science and technology and create new diplomatic alliances. Of course, England couldn’t escape his attention. He mostly studied shipbuilding at the famous Deptford Dockyard, but he also met King William III, and, reportedly, Isaac Newton. Peter’s landlord, the famous John Evelyn, was also a respected scientist – a founder member of the Royal Society.


13.12.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the Presentation of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia by Russia 2018 Local Organising Committee.

Ladies and gentlemen, dear friends, I am pleased to welcome you to the Russian Embassy at the Presentation of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia by Russia 2018 Local Organising Committee. It’s a common knowledge, that football is the most popular game in the world. It is an honour for us to host the 2018 FIFA World Cup for the first time in the history of our country. I believe that those who come to Russia to support their national teams will leave with unforgettable memories.


08.12.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the Roscosmos "Sputnik" exhibition launch at Rossotrudnichestvo

Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the Roscosmos "Sputnik" exhibition launch at Rossotrudnichestvo (7 December 2017)


25.11.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the reception at the Embassy dedicated to Russian Film Week (24 November 2017)

Ladies and gentlemen, Dear friends First of all, I would like to pay tribute to the outstanding Russian opera singer Dmitri Hvorostovsky who passed away this week. In 2015 he gave a concert in this very hall. I am delighted to welcome you at our reception dedicated to the Russian Film Week and the environmental causes it champions. This year their charity partner is World Wide Fund for Nature, which runs many projects in Russia in coordination and with support of the Russian Government. Russia has a unique, fascinating wildlife. A number of this week’s films show the natural beauty of our land and are sure to raise awareness of how fragile this beauty is. We appreciate the WWF effort in Russia and worldwide and call on everybody to become a supporter, especially this year, marked as Year of Ecology in Russia.


20.11.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the launch of the Russian Film Week (19 November 2017)

Ladies and gentlemen, It is a pleasure for me to be at the opening of the second edition of the Russian Film Week here in London – which this year also spans to Cambridge and Edinburgh.


16.10.2017 - Unpublished letter to the Editor of The Times (sent 12 October)

Sir, If British MPs are free to speak out, wherever they wish, on any issue, why try to block their freedom of speech (“Helping Putin”, 11 October)? If a TV channel wants (and is legally bound) to present different points of view, why slam those who express these views? If the mere act of giving an interview to foreign media amounts to high treason, why does The Times interview Russian politicians without fear? And finally - while MPs critical of Russia are welcome guests on the Russian TV channel RT, does your paper give the same treatment to those critical of the paper’s owner? Konstantin Shlykov Press Secretary of the Embassy of the Russian Federation


25.09.2017 - PRESENTATION by Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk at the Christian Future of Europe Conference 22 September 2017, London

Your Eminences and Your Excellencies, dear Mr. Ambassador, conference organizers and participants, I cordially greet all of those gathered today at the Russian Embassy in London to partake in this conference dedicated to the question of the future of Christianity in Europe. This topic is not only not losing any of its relevance, but is resounding ever anew. Experts believe that today Christianity remains not only the most persecuted religious community on the planet, but is also encountering fresh challenges which touch upon the moral foundations of peoples' lives, their faith and their values. Recent decades have seen a transformation in the religious and ethnic landscape of Europe.



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