23 March 2019
Moscow: 14:07
London: 11:07

Consular queries:  
+44 (0) 203 668 7474  

384 days have passed since the Salisbury incident - no credible information or response from the British authorities                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     376 days have passed since the death of Nikolay Glushkov on British soil - no credible information or response from the British authorities



Letter to the Editor of The Washington Post by Mr. Dmitry Polyanskiy, First Deputy Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the UN

Dear Mr. Baron, 

I have to address you with regard to the article entitled “A dispatch from the fight against Russian disinformation – and a place where truth is winning” by Mr. Philip Bump, published  in “The Washington Post” on 25 July 2018, which mentions me personally in the context of a very sensible topic for us – investigation of 2014 Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash in Ukraine.

I would like to stress that I am writing this letter in my personal capacity and I am not directly involved in relevant investigative efforts on our side. But even the information that is available in open sources which could be traced by any researcher allows me to make the conclusions that I make.

I would not conceal that I was very much disappointed by this publication which clearly does not meet the standards of an unbiased journalist report. Its main message is to illustrate alleged “Russian efforts to undercut findings” of “independent investigators” and “propaganda efforts of Russian government” in general. Needless to say that the article proceeds from the assumption that Russia was behind the downing of MH17 and all our efforts are aimed just at covering up the culprits.

I completely disagree with such a narrative and want to clarify several key points in this regard.

Since the very beginning Russia was and continues to be genuinely interested in discovering the truth about this tragic event. We supported all the efforts to conduct full and transparent investigation, we exercised our influence on Donbass rebels who, despite very difficult combat situation caused by the Ukrainian authorities’ obsession to punish their own citizens by military force for their desire to preserve their language and culture, provided unhindered and full access to the crash site. All those who wanted to visit it had the opportunity to do so. Every material evidence was also gathered and transported to the Netherlands for the needs of investigation.

We from our side provided a lot of information and material to the investigation team, in particular primary radar data. Upon its request Russia disclosed classified information on Buk missiles 9M38 and 9M38M1. Our producer of this ammunition “Almaz-Antey” also modeled the incident and widely shared technical data and the conclusions of this simulation. The Dutch side is also aware of a lot of witness accounts of people living in this area. We expressed and continue to express our readiness to join the group of investigators.

Nevertheless, the Dutch investigators since the very beginning showed particular distrust to our findings and contribution. Russian experts were excluded from their work. Much of the data that we provided was ignored and disregarded in the reports. The trend was very clear – to ignore everything that exposed Ukrainian responsibility for the downing of MH17 and to encourage every claim, be it undocumented or even absurd, that Russia or “Russian-backed rebels” were behind it. It is enough to indicate that the investigators do not press the US to provide satellite data from the day and the site of the crush (Americans publicly confirmed that they possess such data, but it is “classified”) and accept the refusal of Ukraine to provide primary radar data under laughable pretext. Refusal of Ukrainian authorities to close the airspace over the Eastern part of the country at the day of the crash despite ongoing military operation of Ukrainian forces there which is hard to explain by any logic is also disregarded.

In the absence of any trustworthy proofs that “Russians did it” the Dutch investigators started to rely more and more on social media and on the findings of investigator groups like Bellingcat which is in the center of the article. To us the whole idea to use social media accounts as a proof in any investigation is extremely bizarre and doubtful. In our days it is not a problem any more to fake any video or photo with easily available software. We also have a lot of reasons not to trust particularly Bellingcat which was repeatedly caught red-handed by Internet users by voicing anti-Russian or anti-Syrian allegations based on fakes. And these fakes are largely exposed in the Web. Internet users have a lot of questions about Bellingcat financing, important American and Western funds that traditionally support anti-Russian campaigns are said to be the main sponsors of these “investigators”, which casts obvious doubt on their impartiality.

Besides, there are a lot of other Internet social-media investigators on the Web who claim things opposite to the “findings” of Bellingcat that clearly indicate that Ukraine is behind the downing of MH17. Why are they ignored while Bellingcat accounts are praised and unquestioned?

I personally tried to engage with Bellingcat through my Twitter account @dpol_un. But the moment I doubted their impartiality and illustrated (upon their request) that they produce fakes I faced a vicious verbal attack from them, including their founder Elliot Higgins who, as was claimed in the article “earned international attention for his exhaustive – and accurate – analysis...”. First of all, they said that I do not exist and called me “Kremlin bot” – a usual tactics for those who disrespect the opinion of the others on the Web.
I have to say that this “journalist hero” of yours disappointed me most of all sending personal insults through Twitter. I enclose some of the snapshots for your reference. After the bellingcats, their trolls and bots continued to insult me, I had to blacklist some of them, including Higgins. Of course, no apologies followed up to today which is very illustrative of quality of their “work”.

How can “responsible investigators” behave like this? There are hundreds of Internet users who already exposed their lies and all the bellingcats do is attack and bully these users. They just do not have other arguments besides insults and pathetic lies. I believe that the fact that you praise their efforts and close the eyes on all the numerous substantiated claims that they produce fakes is not becoming to the reputation of your distinguished paper. Nor it gives any credit to the Dutch investigators.

But let’s put aside the bellingcats, let their conscience judge them, they obviously do not deserve so much attention. What worries me most of all is that after four years of the MH17 tragic accident we are still very far from establishing the truth. Unfortunately, the recent push of the Joint Investigation Team to hold Russia responsible on the basis of bellingcats’ findings, inconclusive and missing data from Ukraine and US and with total disregard of our data and documents is another step in this totally wrong direction.
And the attempts to exploit the feelings of the relatives of the victims, mobilize them in support of these unsubstantiated claims are absolutely immoral.

My country remains ready to join international investigative efforts to find the truth about MH17 crash. We are also consistently supporting the efforts to find those responsible of this crime and bring them to justice. Russia must be part of the investigation team and not its object – nobody has cancelled the presumption
of innocence principle. What we do not accept are ultimatums and fakes.

Given the fact that my name was quoted in the abovementioned article in a very dubious context I respectfully ask you to publish my letter in your newspaper. I will also make it open and publish it on the website of our Permanent Mission.


Sincerely yours,


Dmitry Polyanskiy

First Deputy Permanent Representative 



21.03.2019 - Introductory remarks by Lord West at the reception dedicated to Soviet War Memorial Trust, 20 March 2019

In 2005, as First Sea Lord, I had the great honour of being present in the ‘Hero City’ Murmansk on Victory Day, together with a party of over 300 British veterans, His Royal Highness the Duke of York, and the frigate HMS Sutherland. After a moving ceremony and parade in the city’s main square, I was invited to walk alongside the governor of the Murmansk Oblast and the Commander of the Northern Fleet at the head of a procession of veterans and citizens up to the huge statue of the soldier ‘Alyosha’ – the Monument to the Defenders of the Soviet Arctic – that stands on a high bluff overlooking the Kola Inlet, gazing across to the distant border with Norway that was protected with such determination and courage. There we laid wreaths to the fallen and remembered those who had died or been permanently affected by the terrible events of those years.

21.03.2019 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question regarding the reports of the incident with the Russian sailors in UK waters

Question: Does the Embassy have a statement to make regarding the Russian sailors who were found on an island in the Bristol Channel?

21.03.2019 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's introductory remarks at the reception dedicated to Soviet War Memorial Trust, 20 March 2019

It’s a great pleasure for me to host this reception today! We dedicate the today’s event to our friends from the Soviet War Memorial Trust. Their enthusiasm and dedication made it possible, that a unique monument, commemorated to the sacrifice of 27 million lives by the citizens and armed forces of the former Soviet Union in its joint struggle with the Western Allies to defeat Nazism during World War II, became a focus of Victory Day events in London. Memorial work nowadays takes a special place in activities of Russian MFA, and WWII memory is, of course, a top priority here. Collecting the information about military memorials, arranging repairs where needed and monitoring their condition – all this is a significant part of the work of many Embassies around the world. Our Ministry has signed multiple agreements on cooperation with various organizations and charities working in this area, such as the Russian Heritage committee here in the UK.

21.03.2019 - Statement by H.E. Mr. Sergey Lavrov, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation at the Plenary Session of the Conference on Disarmament, Geneva, March 20, 2019

Distinguished Mr. President, Distinguished Mr. Secretary-General Colleagues, Ladies and Gentlemen, A year has passed since I last addressed this audience. By historical standards, this is a miniscule amount of time. Yet the events that have taken place over the year have brought us to the edge of a new era in arms control. A year ago, you and us still hoped that, by means of constructive dialogue, we altogether could overcome differences, find compromise solutions and give new impetus to the joint effort aimed at strengthening peace and maintaining global stability.

19.03.2019 - Ambassador Yakovenko met IGC Executive Director

On 19 March 2019 Russian Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko met Executive Director of the International Grain Council (IGC)

19.03.2019 - Agricultural Attache V.Derbenskiy visits the International Food and Drink Event 2019

On 19 March the Agricultural Attaché of the Russian Embassy Vladimir Derbenskiy visited the International Food and Drink Event 2019, one of the most important food industry shows hosted in the UK.

18.03.2019 - Embassy Press Officer replies to a media question regarding the statement by Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt on the 5th anniversary of Crimea’s reunification with Russia

Question: How would you react to today’s statement by Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt who has again condemned the “illegal annexation” of the Crimean Peninsula that was a result of a “blatant land grab” and a “sham referendum”? Answer: This position is not new. It is based on a total disregard for the rights and interests of Crimeans, but also those of Ukrainians, whose president was removed in 2014 in an unconstitutional way and with the West’s direct support. Faced with a coup in Kiev, accompanied by a neo-Nazi frenzy and direct threats of violence in Crimea, the Crimean people decided that it could no longer exercise its right to self-determination within the Ukrainian state, declared independence and re-joined Russia.

16.03.2019 - Statement by First Deputy Permanent Representative Dmitry Polyanskiy at the Security Council Arria-Formula meeting on Crimea

Statement by First Deputy Permanent Representative Dmitry Polyanskiy at the Security Council Arria-Formula meeting on Crimea regarding “Fifth anniversary of the beginning of Russia’s occupation of Crimea: A blatant violation of international law” Distinguished Mr. President, At the outset let me express condolences to the friendly people of New Zealand regarding the disastrous events in Christchurch. We condemn this heinous crime. It should be investigated and any possible recurrences should be prevented. We hope that all the wounded will feel better and recover soon. There was a good storyteller Lewis Carrol. His most famous tale “Alice in Wonderland” tells us about a little girl who dreamt and thought it was real. I am having an impression that todays event is held by such “Alices” who tell us about their dreams. Their dreams are mainly scary and appalling.

14.03.2019 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question on the UK position regarding humanitarian aid deliveries to Syria

Question: How would you comment on the UK position regarding humanitarian aid deliveries to Syria in the light of today’s International Donor Conference on Syria in Brussels? Answer: We have taken note of the FCO press release on the UK participation in this conference, stating that “humanitarian access to millions in need within Syria continues to be obstructed by the Syrian regime who routinely refuse requests from the UN and aid organisations to deliver aid”. These allegations are simply not true. In fact, the Syrian government makes every effort for delivering humanitarian aid to various parts of the country.

12.03.2019 - Welcome note by Ambassador Yakovenko at the reception to mark Russia’s participation in the London Book Fair 2019

I am delighted to welcome you today at the reception to mark Russia’s participation in this year’s London Book Fair. It has already become a tradition and the “Read Russia” stand is one of the “trademark features” of the Fair which opens tomorrow. The main goal of literature, as well as of culture in general, is to build bridges between different countries and bring our ties to a new level of connectivity, engaging new dimensions and areas of contacts. This role has grown only more important during the chaotic and unpredictable times we live in today.

all messages