19 August 2017
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PRESS RELEASES AND NEWS

08.08.2017

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s statement and answer to a media question following the Russia-ASEAN Ministerial Meeting, the East Asia Summit Foreign Ministers’ Meeting and the ASEAN Regional Forum on security, Manila, August 8, 2017

Manila has been hosting the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) events for two days. ASEAN has about twenty partners. This format included a series of dialogue meetings of ASEAN plus each partner, including Russia-ASEAN, the meetings of the foreign ministers of the East Asian Summit countries (ASEAN and its key partners) and the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), traditionally devoted to security issues.

During the Russia-ASEAN foreign ministers’ meeting, we certainly congratulated our colleagues on the Association’s 50th anniversary. We reviewed the implementation of the agreements that were reached at the May 2016 summit in Sochi. We endorsed a roadmap for implementing the recommendations of the Eminent Persons Group to the presidents in the context of that summit. Individual statements that motivate us to more active cooperation in the fight against terrorism and the programme of action to combat drug trafficking were approved.

We reaffirmed our readiness to increase the number of scholarships that we offer to our colleagues from the ASEAN countries for the training of law enforcement personnel at the Russian Interior Ministry and Federal Security Service higher education establishments.

We agreed on the promotion of our economic cooperation. There are huge resources here. We coordinated more than 20 projects that are now in the works and will be more specifically considered at the meeting of Economic Ministers of Russia and ASEAN in September 2017. In September, a dialogue between the business circles of Russia and ASEAN will be held on the sidelines of the Eastern Economic Forum. Also, major cultural and humanitarian events are planned, including, as I said, the 50th anniversary of ASEAN celebrations – a joint Russian-ASEAN orchestra performance, the youth and university forums.

Another result of our meeting is that we have formed an expert group from the academic community to consider areas for future cooperation. As for the ministerial meetings of the EAS and ARF countries, the focus was on further improvement of our interaction on security issues, cooperation and overall architecture at the intergovernmental level in the Asia-Pacific Region (APR).

We decided to submit a document Russia has drafted jointly with Indonesia to the East Asia Summit, which will take place here in Manila in autumn. It is devoted to fighting the ideology of terrorism. Everybody agreed that this is the most important issue, which should be dealt with closely. We are promoting a similar initiative in New York within the United Nations framework.

We also agreed to add another issue to the EAS agenda – combating infectious diseases. Since it is Russia’s initiative, the first meeting on this issue will be held in our country in October.

Speaking about the regional security forum, I would like to note the interest in our initiative to do an inventory of all the groups that function in the APR, including those I mentioned (ASEAN plus Dialogue Partners, EAS, ASEAN Regional Forum on security). There is also the ASEANAPOL force – a ministry of the interior, a regional Interpol, with which Russia is also actively cooperating. There is also a mechanism ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meetings Plus (ADMM-Plus), in which Russian Defence Minister Sergey Shoigu also participates.

We suggested thinking how to establish network relations between all these groups in order to coordinate their activities more closely and, in this context, also to develop contacts with organisations that are established outside the ASEAN-centric groups, primarily the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO). In this context, we recalled the agreement reached between Russian President Vladimir Putin and his colleagues at the ASEAN Summit in Sochi in May 2016 on building the Greater Eurasian Partnership through the establishment of regular multi-faceted ties between the member countries of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), the SCO and ASEAN.

I think that very good work has been done, but we need to take specific steps to implement all that was agreed upon. Everyone is highly motivated. We will actively promote this.

Question: Are there any changes in North Korea’s position after the adoption of the UN Security Council resolution?

Sergey Lavrov: I heard that the Foreign Ministry of North Korea has made a harsh statement rejecting this resolution and condemning it as unfair. Strictly speaking, this is how representatives of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea have reacted to all previous UN Security Council resolutions. We will judge by their actions.

We are confident that there is no alternative to the resumption of the political process, in particular the six-party talks. Russia and China have made relevant proposals. We will promote them in New York and other venues. We will certainly continue our dialogue with our North Korean neighbours. We expect that with the prudent approach of all players, naturally including the United States, the Republic of Korea and Japan, we will be able to find a solution that suits all parties.




LATEST EVENTS

18.08.2017 - 72 UNGA: The UN must adopt new rules of behaviour in the information space

The efforts aimed at ensuring international information security with the UN playing the key role, should be focused on the prevention of conflicts in the information space caused by the use of ICTs as a tool to interference in domestic affairs as well as by terrorists and for other illegal purposes. They should also focus on the development and adoption of universal rules of responsible behaviour of States regarding in the sphere of ICTs.


18.08.2017 - Briefing by Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova, Moscow, August 17, 2017

We are pleased to note the positive trends in the way the military and political situation in Syria is developing, the way the ceasefire regime is being strengthened and the de-escalation zones are beginning to function: in the southwest of the country, in Eastern Ghouta and in the north of Homs province.


17.08.2017 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks and answers to media questions at a joint press conference following talks with Foreign Minister of Bolivia Fernando Huanacuni Mamani, Moscow, August 16, 2017

We discussed the state of our bilateral relations. We have a rich and multifaceted agenda. We noted the very good dynamics of the political dialogue, and the successful implementation of the agreements reached last year during the visit to Russia of Mr Mamani’s predecessor as foreign minister of Bolivia. Everything that the presidents discussed, and everything we agreed upon between our respective foreign, economic, and social ministries, as well as our companies, is being implemented at a fairly steady pace.


17.08.2017 - 72 UNGA: Human rights must be protected but not used a pretext to intervene in domestic affairs

The primary responsibility for the protection and promotion of human rights lies with the States, while the UN executive structures should play a supporting role. The key principle in this field is to ensure equal cooperation between States based on the primacy of international law, respect for sovereignty and sovereign equality of States.


16.08.2017 - 72 UNGA: Afghanistan is a matter of primary concern

Russia supports efforts of the Government of Afghanistan to advance national reconciliation and dialogue with the armed opposition. We are deeply concerned over the rise of ISIS in the north of Afghanistan and over the risk of spread of terrorist activity to the Central Asia. We believe that the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) as well as enhanced regional cooperation will play a crucial role in the stabilization process. Moscow supports the work of the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) which serves as the main coordinator of international civilian efforts in Afghanistan.


15.08.2017 - Embassy responds to Russian media question

Question: It looks like British media continue their policy of writing/saying either harsh criticism of Russia or nothing at all. And this in summer time, when journos like Ed Lucas, Luke Harding, Con Coughlin and Roger Boyes, who specialize in Russia-bashing, are away on holiday. At the same time it seems that the same attitude takes shape towards America, if we take Gideon Rachman’s article in today’s FT as example. What is your view of that?


15.08.2017 - 72 UNGA: We must help relaunch Israeli-Palestinian negotiations

There is a need to relaunch direct Israeli-Palestinian negotiations on the Middle East settlement. We call on both sides to abstain from unilateral steps which undermine the chances of the two-State solution. Russia continues to contribute to the settlement both through bilateral channels and in the format of the Quartet of international mediators.


15.08.2017 - Press release on Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov’s meeting with Qadri Jamil, a leader of the Syrian opposition Popular Front for Change and Liberation and head of the Syrian opposition’s Moscow platform

On August 14, Russian Special Presidential Representative for the Middle East and Africa and Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov received Qadri Jamil, a leader of the Syrian opposition Popular Front for Change and Liberation and head of the Syrian opposition’s Moscow platform.


15.08.2017 - Comment by the Information and Press Department on terrorist attack in Ouagadougou

On August 13, a group of armed individuals attacked visitors of a café in the centre of Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso. According to local authorities, 17 people were killed and about ten wounded to varying degrees as a result of the terrorist attack.


14.08.2017 - Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s meeting with Libyan National Army Commander Khalifa Haftar

On August 14, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov had a meeting at the Foreign Ministry with Libyan National Army Commander Khalifa Haftar, who is paying a working visit to Moscow.



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