17 January 2019
Moscow: 14:20
London: 11:20

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319 days have passed since the Salisbury incident - no credible information or response from the British authorities                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     311 days have passed since the death of Nikolay Glushkov on British soil - no credible information or response from the British authorities

PRESS RELEASES AND NEWS

08.01.2019

Embassy Press Officer comments on the latest media publication on the Salisbury incident

Question: How would you comment on the Daily Telegraph publications alleging that British authorities have established full details of the assassination attempt of Sergei and Yulia Skripal and describing their current life in England?
Answer: We are dealing with yet another media leak, unofficial and unverifiable. It provides no new facts on the Salisbury incident, let alone evidence. The circumstances of the incident remain as confusing as ever.

An unnamed “government source” says the authorities “know everything worth knowing”. Yet, the investigation has still not been allowed to inform the public on where Sergei and Yulia Skripal went and what they did after they left home in the morning of 4 March, moving towards the Porton Down laboratory with telephones allegedly switched off. The identification of the suspects, Ruslan Boshirov and Alexander Petrov, is based on no evidence apart from them being filmed several hundred metres away from Mr Skripal’s house. Of the 11,000 hours of CCTV recordings, the public has been able to see a few seconds. It is still unknown whether there was a CCTV camera on Mr Skripal’s house, and if yes, then what has become of its recordings. Probably the authorities don’t consider these details “worth knowing”, since they came to “conclusions” almost immediately after the incident. But reasonable people in Britain, Russia and elsewhere would like to see more clarity.

As regards the reports on the Skripals living in the South of England, on their changed appearance, on Yulia having been offered a job requiring Russian language skills, on her contacts with friends, etc., careful reading reveals that these are mere suggestions by people who claim to know the manner of work of British secret services in similar situations. This is speculation not deserving a serious comment. The facts are different: Sergei’s elderly mother has not been able to speak either to him or to Yulia ever since March (as shown in the recent BBC documentary), while the UK government, in violation of its international legal obligations, continues to reject the Russian demands for a consular visit to the Russian nationals, to conceal their whereabouts and to deny assistance to Russian investigators.

This means that the Russian nationals, Sergei and Yulia Skripal, remain forcibly held by the UK, while true circumstances of the 4 March incident have still not been established. No amount of leaks and “expert” comments can remedy this situation.




LATEST EVENTS

17.01.2019 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks and answers to media questions at a news conference on the results of Russian diplomacy

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks and answers to media questions at a news conference on the results of Russian diplomacy in 2018 Moscow, January 16, 2019


05.01.2019 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question regarding recent statements on Russia by Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt

Question: How would you comment on Jeremy Hunt’s speech in Singapore, in which he named Russia’s actions on the international arena as the prime example of a threat to the rules-based international system? Answer: Such rhetoric of British officials is not new. It again combines manipulation of international norms with distortion of facts. As stated repeatedly, Russia does not accept the concept of a “rules-based international system”. The international order is based on international law, i.e. legally binding norms that have been agreed on and accepted by all states. By substituting “international law” with obscure “rules”, the UK and other Western countries aim to shed the responsibility for their unlawful behaviour, while assuming the right to randomly blame other countries of breaking “rules” to which they had never signed up.


04.01.2019 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question regarding recent statements by UK Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt on Syria

Question: How could you comment on the statements by the UK Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt in a “Sky News” interview on President Assad’s future and the role of Russia in the Syrian peace settlement? Answer: We have taken note of Mr Hunt saying that “regretfully” Bashar al-Assad “is going to be around for a while and that is because of the support that he’s had from Russia” and “Russia may think that it’s gained a sphere of influence [but] you’ve also gained a responsibility”.


31.12.2018 - Interview with Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Sergey Lavrov for the show, Moscow. Kremlin. Putin, Moscow, December 30, 2018

Question: What is the main outcome of the year for you? Sergey Lavrov: It is difficult to highlight something specific. If we speak about foreign policy, I cannot make an evaluation myself. We have tried to do everything that is necessary in order to fulfill the instructions of President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin, to implement the foreign political course set by him. It is not for me to judge how successful we were. This should be left to the people to decide, of course, and to the leadership of the Russian Federation.


28.12.2018 - Embassy Press Officer replies to a media question regarding the situation with the staffing of the Russian and British diplomatic missions

Question: Could you comment on the statement by Ambassador Yakovenko regarding the forthcoming restoration of the number of Russian and British diplomats, which was subsequently denied by the UK Foreign Office? Answer: We saw the rebuttal by the British side. Here are the facts. In December Russia and the UK have, for the first time since March, issued a number of visas for future employees of the diplomatic missions of the two countries, on the basis of reciprocity.


25.12.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question concerning the Prime Minister’s 2018 Christmas Message to the Armed Forces

Question: How would you comment on Theresa May thanking the UK Armed Forces for “protecting our waters and our skies from Russian intrusion” in her Christmas Message? Answer: We were utterly surprised by the Prime Minister’s rhetoric. An uninitiated reader may fall under the impression that Russia has made attempts to violate the UK air space or territorial waters. This has never been happened.


24.12.2018 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s interview with Rossiya Segodnya

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s interview with the international news agency Rossiya Segodnya, December 24, 2018


24.12.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question concerning the calls to apply pressure against the Sputnik bureau

Question: Today’s publication by the “Times” contains personal information of 8 employees of the Sputnik bureau in Edinburgh, as well as calls to seize their assets in UK as belonging to the“Kremlin propaganda machine” by Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP. How can you comment on that? Answer: Despite being a member of an opposition party, Mr Cole-Hamilton seems to understand intimately the political strategy of the Conservative Government towards Russian media in the UK. Pressure from all sides, ranking from ungrounded accusations to visa and banking problems is the new reality. Few opportunities to hinder the work of our media in the UK have been missed, in defiance of the UK international obligations and the civilized rules of media freedom.


22.12.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question concerning the UK support for the formation of so-called “army of Kosovo”

Question: How do you assess the UK Government position regarding the creation of so-called “national army” of Kosovo? Answer: The decision by Pristina to transform the Kosovo Security Force into full-fledged “armed forces” is a flagrant violation of UN Security Council Resolution 1244, which is the fundamental international legal act defining the modalities of the Kosovo settlement. Let me remind you that the resolution only allows the deployment of only international contingents in Kosovo.


19.12.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question concerning recent statements by the UK Ministry of Defence

Question: How would you comment on the publication by “Bloomberg” claiming that Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said the UK would adopt a strategy it had not used since the Cold War to combat the threat from Russia? Answer: In this particular case the media have referred to a statement that Mr Williamson did not actually make. However, this whole situation shows that a certain part of the British establishment is determined to treat Russia as its main adversary for the years to come.



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