18 March 2018
Moscow: 00:20
London: 21:20

Consular queries:  
+44 (0) 203 668 7474  




Speech of Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko at Soviet War Memorial, Victory Day 2015

Your Excellencies!

Dear Veterans!

Ladies and gentlemen, friends!

Дорогие ветераны!

С Днём Победы!

Спасибо большое, что вы приехали в Лондон и сегодня вместе с нами! (аплодисменты)

С вашего позволения далее буду говорить по-английски.

Every May we gather here, at the Soviet War Memorial, to commemorate all those who sacrificed their lives in the fight against fascism. This year is of special significance as it marks the 70th anniversary of the Great Victory.

Nobody doubts the decisive contribution of the peoples of the Soviet Union to the defeat of Nazi Germany. We shouldn’t forget what was at stake. Professor Geoffrey Roberts rightly wrote in the Financial Times that “the second world war was far more than a geopolitical contest. It was a struggle for the future of Europe, and European civilization was saved from Hitler and Nazi barbarism by the colossal sacrifices of the Soviet people and the Red Army”.

World War Two taught us lessons that are relevant today. 70 years after the Great Victory we observe attempts to rewrite history to suit some geopolitical conjuncture of today, to revive Nazi and nationalistic ideologies, racial intolerance, to sow the seeds of conflicts and international tensions.

One of the lessons is that the victory could only be achieved by joint efforts of all who participated in the struggle against Nazism. We will always remember our allies — Great Britain, the United States, France and other countries who fought in the anti-Hitlerite coalition, the German and Italian resistance. We remember and honour all Europeans who paid a high price to free the mankind from Nazism.

Today we pay tribute to veterans who went through all the hardships of war towards the long-awaited victory. Years will pass but the memory of your heroic feat will remain forever in the hearts of succeeding generations.

I cannot stress enough the significance of the Soviet War Memorial that has become a sacred place where British and former USSR citizens, especially veterans, can lay flowers to honour the memory of those who gave their lives for their countries during the Second World War. It has now been 16 years since the unveiling of the memorial. I am sure that the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the Great Victory will become another milestone in the history of the memorial.

Establishment of the Memorial could only be possible with the support of the governments of Russian Federation and United Kingdom, local authorities of London and it bouroughs, public, and commercial organizations and ordinary people.

I would like to thank all the members of the Soviet Memorial Trust Fund, and especially its Chairman Phillip Matthews and its Secretary Ralph Gibson for their hard work dedicated to organisation of annual Victory Day ceremony and other events.

This year, a new feature has been added to this memorial. Next to the Russian birches a British oak tree, the Victory Tree, has been planted on behalf of Ambassadors of the CIS countries. It symbolizes the importance of our wartime alliance and our gratitude to the British veterans including those who went on the Arctic convoys, whose sacrifice helped bring closer the VE Day.

          Today on the instructions of President Vladimir Putin I have a great honour and pleasure to present Russian jubilee medals commemorating the 70th anniversary of the Victory in the Second World War to a number of Russian and British veterans.


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.

23.09.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at presentation of the book "The Mystery of Repentance" held at the Russian Embassy

I’m glad to welcome you here to a discussion of two prominent hierarchs of the Russian Orthodox Church and the Church of England, on Christian future of Europe.

all messages