26 September 2021
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1302 days have passed since the Salisbury incident - no credible information or response from the British authorities                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     1294 days have passed since the death of Nikolay Glushkov on British soil - no credible information or response from the British authorities



Comment by Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova in connection with the Paris Normandy format summit’s anniversary

Kiev’s continued reluctance to fulfill its obligations under the Minsk Package of Measures and the Normandy format agreements, and Berlin and Paris’ connivance with the Ukrainian authorities’ destructive policy are a cause for concern.

One year ago today, on December 9, 2019, at the Normandy summit in Paris, the leaders of Russia, Germany, France and Ukraine reiterated that there was no alternative to the Minsk agreements as the basis for resolving the conflict in Donbass and outlined seven priority steps to be taken by Kiev, Donetsk and Lugansk. It included observing the ceasefire, separating forces, demining, exchanging detainees, opening contact line checkpoints, coordinating the legal aspects of Donbass’ special status with the inclusion of the Steinmeier formula in Ukrainian legislation, which determines the procedure for the gradual entry into force of the special status.

Kiev and Donbass were expected to implement this programme in four months. In April, another Normandy summit was supposed to come up with more steps to implement the Package of Measures. However, even after a year, only two of the seven Paris decisions have been implemented, and only partially. In July, following persistent resistance from Ukraine, additional measures to consolidate the ceasefire went into effect, which had been largely distorted or disavowed by Kiev unilaterally by September. At present, the ceasefire is being somewhat observed only because Donbass is not responding to Ukraine’s shelling and violations of other measures. Two detainee exchanges have taken place, in December 2019 and in April 2020. But in fact, Kiev failed to clear all of these individuals, which is why some people may be arrested again.

There is no progress on the other Paris decisions. Kiev continues to replace practical work with going through the motions and a feigned constructive approach. The opening of the Shchastye and Zolotoye checkpoints in the Lugansk region in early November is a case in point. Throughout the year, Kiev has been slowing this process, has refused to provide security guarantees, and has kept the OSCE and Lugansk in the dark about the work underway on its territory. As a result, it built crossings only for pedestrians, knowing full well that Lugansk was preparing vehicle crossings that are critical for humanitarian aid deliveries.

The situation is about the same with other Paris directives. The political aspects are in the worst shape. Ukraine has still done nothing on agreements with Donbass on all aspects of a political settlement, including making the Steinmeier formula part of the law on the special status of Donbass, which expires on December 31. Representatives of Ukraine refuse to provide even general outlines for the future status of Donbass. Even if Kiev formally renews the current law, this will again be done without the aforementioned formula or any other agreed to special status, as provided for by the Minsk agreements and the Paris summit decisions.

A resolution adopted by the Verkhovna Rada in July on holding local elections in Ukraine, except Donbass, came as a major irritant that blocked the Contact Group’s activities. The conditions that the parliamentarians put forward for Donetsk and Lugansk grossly violate the Package of Measures. To get beyond the impasse, Donbass suggested that Kiev agree on an action plan for the deputies in the vein of the Minsk agreements, and provided a draft of this document. In response, Kiev presented its Plan of Joint Steps which to an even greater degree trampled on the Package of Measures, and ignored the proposals advanced by Donbass. In the Contact Group, the representatives of Ukraine came up with an absurd proposal for recognising as “non-existent” the project introduced by Donbass and officially received by Ukraine.

Unfortunately, Ukraine's destructive actions did not elicit a proper response from the settlement co-sponsors, namely, Germany and France. Doubts about the sincerity of their intentions to help overcome the Ukraine crisis were confirmed by their efforts to disrupt the Arria-formula meeting of the UN Security Council on December 2, which was dedicated to implementing the Minsk agreements, in which representatives of Donetsk and Lugansk took part. Fearful of hearing the truth, Germany, France, Ukraine and a number of other countries refused to participate in this meeting.

Admittedly, the situation that we witnessed after the Normandy summit in Berlin in 2016 is here again. It took Kiev more than three years to implement only some of its decisions, and this was only possible after the presidential and parliamentary elections. We hope that this time France and Germany will help convince our Ukrainian partners of the need to implement a simple set of practical steps that are clearly outlined in the Package of Measures and the decisions of the Normandy format summit in Paris, through a direct dialogue with representatives of certain regions of Ukraine’s Donetsk and Lugansk regions.


16.09.2021 - Presiden Putin's address to citizens of Russia ahead of State Duma elections

President Vladimir Putin addressed the citizens of Russia ahead of the State Duma election.

04.08.2021 - Russia`s position at the 76th Session of the UN General Assembly

1. The goal of the 76-th session of the UN General Assembly (GA) is to reaffirm the central and coordinating role of the Organization in international affairs. Owing to its representativeness and universality, the UN is rightfully viewed as a unique platform for an equitable dialogue aimed at reaching compromise solutions with due regard to different opinions. Attempts to undermine the authority and legitimacy of the UN are, in our view, extremely dangerous, as they can lead to the dismantlement of the multipolar system of international relations.

04.08.2021 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s interview with the newspaper Komsomolskaya Pravda, Moscow, August 4, 2021

Question: Russia was not only the first country to register a vaccine – Sputnik V – but has also extended a helping hand to many countries that urgently needed it. Some of them accepted Russia’s assistance with gratitude. Tiny San Marino overcame the pandemic within just a matter of seven days. Thanks to Sputnik V, the number of new cases in Argentina is now down to less than one percent. Do other countries really appreciate our support, and should we continue helping them? Sergey Lavrov: Indeed, we were not only the first to register a vaccine, but we also declared our readiness to supply it on a transparent and non-discriminating basis. I am quite sure that our partners appreciate what we are doing.

23.07.2021 - Comment by Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova on recent statements by MI5 Director General Ken McCallum

We have noted statements by MI5 Director General Ken McCallum, which have been taken up by the British media, referring to security threats facing the United Kingdom, allegedly emanating from the actions of hostile states, namely, cyber-attacks, misinformation, etc. Director General Ken McCallum also lists Russia among such hostile states. At the same time, all of his assertions are in the well-known “highly likely” style. He provides no evidence or specific facts and merely speaks about certain hybrid threats. There is no specific example to confirm all this; however, this creates a narrative that is detrimental for and has a destructive effect on interstate dialogue and the normal development of bilateral ties.

22.07.2021 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov's interview with Interfax news agency, Moscow, July 21, 2021

Question: The German-US draft agreement on the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline ties up Ukraine's energy security with new sanctions on Russia that the Germans will be able to impose. Does Russia think the latest threat of sanctions is acceptable? Will it affect the implementation of the project? Sergey Lavrov: Any threat of sanctions, be it new, old or ongoing, is unacceptable, because only the UN Security Council can impose them. Our Western colleagues, primarily the United States and the European Union, which is quickly adopting these “bad habits,” are quite often carried away by sanctions. They are no longer interested in the culture of diplomacy or talks. In fact, they are losing it. They want instant results.

17.07.2021 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s article on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Good-Neighbourliness, Friendship and Cooperation between China and Russia, published by the newspapers Rossiyskaya Gazeta (Russia) and Renmin Ribao (China), July 16, 2021

Relations between the Russian Federation and the People’s Republic of China have reached an all-time high, setting an example of interstate cooperation in the 21st century. Just as in any story of success, there are backbone pillars in our relations that set the tune for our forward development in the years ahead. One such pillar in the development of modern Russian-Chinese ties was the signing of the Treaty of Good-Neighbourliness, Friendship and Cooperation. Twenty years ago, it was signed by President of Russia Vladimir Putin and President of China Jiang Zemin.

13.07.2021 - Article by Vladimir Putin ”On the Historical Unity of Russians and Ukrainians“, 12.07.2021

During the recent Direct Line, when I was asked about Russian-Ukrainian relations, I said that Russians and Ukrainians were one people – a single whole. These words were not driven by some short-term considerations or prompted by the current political context. It is what I have said on numerous occasions and what I firmly believe. I therefore feel it necessary to explain my position in detail and share my assessments of today's situation.

09.07.2021 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s address on Russia’s International Activities for Russian Regions’ Development, delivered at Far Eastern Federal University (FEFU), and answers to questions from students and faculty, Vladivostok, July 8, 2021

Thank you for the opportunity to speak here. I have returned from a short Asian tour, during which I visited Indonesia and Laos. We also held a meeting of the Russian and ASEAN foreign ministers in a hybrid format. What we do during our foreign trips and talks with our foreign partners is not done for its own sake. We do it to implement our foreign policy, which was approved by the President of Russia in the Foreign Policy Concept adopted in 2016.

22.06.2021 - Article by President Vladimir Putin ”Being Open, Despite the Past“ published in the German weekly newspaper Die Zeit, 22 June 2021

Article by Russian President Vladimir Putin ”Being Open, Despite the Past“ published in the German weekly newspaper Die Zeit on the occasion of the 80th anniversary of the beginning of the Great Patriotic War.

09.05.2021 - President Putin's address at the military parade marking the 76th Anniversary of Victory

Citizens of Russia, Dear veterans, Comrades soldiers and sailors, sergeants and warrant officers, midshipmen and sergeant majors, Comrades officers, generals and admirals, Happy Victory Day! The Victory had a colossal historic significance for the fate of the entire world. It is a holiday that has always been and will remain a sacred day for Russia, for our nation. It is our holiday by right, for we are blood relatives of those who defeated, crushed, destroyed Nazism. It is ours because we descend from the generation of victors, a generation we are proud of and hold in great honour.

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