23 November 2017
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SPEECHES, INTERVIEWS, ARTICLES

11.05.2017

The Worshipful Mayor of Southwark speech on Victory Day (May 9 2017, Imperial War Museum)

Ambassadors, Ladies and Gentlemen,

 

I welcome you all here today at the Soviet War Memorial as we remember those who gave their lives during the Second World War on the 72nd anniversary of the victory of the allied forces in Europe.

This victory was a moment of great relief across the world as one of the most devastating periods of History began to draw to close. The war in the European theatre came to an end.
It was a war that directly involved over 100 million people from over 30 countries and where it is estimated between 50 and 85 million people died. This war was unprecedented in the loss of civilian as well as military lives. We must remember the extraordinary sacrifice made to defend freedom and democracy, and honour all of those whose contribution enables us to enjoy the liberties we have now.
The Cold War that followed the Second World War affected the way that the contribution of the USSR to Victory was presented here in the UK, but in the 1990’s this began to change. In 1995 the 50th anniversary ceremonies also commemorated the loss of Soviet lives. It became apparent that there was a need for a permanent memorial in London to commemorate the loss of 27 million Soviet men women and children.
Twenty years ago on 9 May 1997 the Soviet War Memorial Trust had its inaugural meeting. The Trust was established to raise funds to create a memorial and we are here today in the presence of the fruits of that work and the dedication and commitment of those involved. This memorial titled Sorrowful, is a semi-abstract figure which holds aloft a bell which will forever remain silent in memory of those who died. I have the maquette in my office at Tooley Street and it is a daily reminder of the sacrifice of so many people. It keeps me humble.
The memorial was unveiled in front of 400 people, on 9 May 1999 by Mayor Bill Skelly (who is here today), and who remains a trustee of the Soviet Memorial trust fund to this day.
This memorial is a fitting recognition of the exceptional contribution made by the peoples of the Soviet Union to the victory of the allies in the Second World War.
There is little doubt that the building of this Memorial has made a significant impact in bringing together people from Russia, the rest of the former Soviet Union with the British public to jointly remember the heroic sacrifices of WWII. Southwark Council remains proud of its involvement and support in this endeavour.




LATEST EVENTS

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.


12.09.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the exhibition opening (“Scythians: Warriors of ancient Siberia” 12 September, British Museum)

Today the British Museum and the State Hermitage of Saint-Petersburg are once again proving their unique world class by bringing a whole new civilization to London. Ancient, and almost mythical, but creative, powerful and very different from what we have all known about antiquity – the Scythians.


14.07.2017 - Letter of Consul General Mr Andrey Pritsepov to the Herald newspaper, published 13.07.2017

I NOTE a rather questionable article by Mark McLaughlin (“Russians lurking near Faslane to eavesdrop on nuclear submarines", The Herald, July 11). Do you really believe that 145 million Russians would elect a leader who would command his nuclear submarines to chase someone's sole and lonely operative U-boat which is firing missiles in the opposite direction or Type 45 destroyers with faulty engines or an aircraft carrier without aircraft on it, all of them being located in Scottish waters?


14.07.2017 - Letter of Consul General Mr Andrey Pritsepov to the Herald newspaper, published 13.07.2017

I NOTE a rather questionable article by Mark McLaughlin (“Russians lurking near Faslane to eavesdrop on nuclear submarines", The Herald, July 11). Do you really believe that 145 million Russians would elect a leader who would command his nuclear submarines to chase someone\'s sole and lonely operative U-boat which is firing missiles in the opposite direction or Type 45 destroyers with faulty engines or an aircraft carrier without aircraft on it, all of them being located in Scottish waters?


03.07.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at breakfast event: Scythians: Warriors of ancient Siberia (3 July, British Museum)

Ladies and Gentlemen, I’m happy that Scythians: Warriors of ancient Siberia exhibition is gaining momentum. We have all seen the excellent teaser reviews in the papers. They are a good sign, but one always expects world class events from the State Hermitage and the British Museum. The public expectations are high and no doubt they will be met.


15.06.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's speech at the British Library exhibition "Russian Revolution: Hope, Tragedy, Myths"

The exhibition "Hope, Tragedy, Myths" gives an excellent insight into the tragic events of 1917: why the revolution started, how it unfolded and evolved into the civil war. It explores the ideas behind the conflict and gives a comprehensive and accurate image. The exhibition gives a unique opportunity to see original documents related to the key personalities of the Russian history, and not only politicians - the section telling the story of the Russian emigration has valuable documents on Russian literature history.


13.06.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko’s speech at Russia’s National Day Reception (13 June 2017, London)

Your Royal Highness, Excellencies, Dear friends, It is a privilege to welcome you all at my Residence on the occasion of Russia’s National Day. Thanks God for fine weather. Hope you will enjoy the time at our place. Ever since my country embarked upon the path of radical change 30 years ago, we have had a difficult, even painful journey. It was the price of profound transformation of a society, aspiring for freedom and justice. We abandoned any ideology as alien to common sense and real needs of real people. We have been seeing those tough decisions bearing fruit.



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