7 August 2020
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887 days have passed since the Salisbury incident - no credible information or response from the British authorities                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     879 days have passed since the death of Nikolay Glushkov on British soil - no credible information or response from the British authorities



Embassy comment regarding Russian humanitarian aid to combat Covid-19

British media continue publications seeking to find discrepancies and hidden agenda of Russian humanitarian assistance rendered to the United States and Italy in order to help them combat the coronavirus pandemic.

In today’s piece, BBC has published results of an investigation aimed at verifying the sincerity of gratitude (an important task indeed) expressed by Americans and Italians towards Russia. The journalists have been able to establish that Russian media reports on Russian flags being flown and Russian anthem being sung in Italy are misleading – the respective reports have only shown one proven instance of demonstration of the flag, while the anthem was played rather than sung. On top of this, BBC is again referring to La Stampa’s speculations claiming that 80 per cent of the Russian aid has been useless.

We cannot but admit that BBC has performed an important and, one would suppose, necessary investigative work. There are, however, certain minor elements that the independent and impartial journalists have overlooked.

Russian aid to Italy is being rendered upon request by Prime Minister Conte expressed to President Putin when they spoke on 21 March. 15 planeloads of aid have been delivered to Italy by Russian Defence Ministry aircraft, each carrying about 60 tons of cargo. The Russian assistance team consists of 122 experts, including 66 servicemen of the radiological, chemical and biological defence troops, as well as 8 teams of doctors, each comprising a physician, an epidemiologist, an anesthesiologist, a nurse and an interpreter. We have provided Italy with one (out of the Russian army’s total of 15) cutting-edge laboratory, 13 disinfection machines and tons of equipment including lung ventilators, biological and patogent test machines, 100 thousand test kits, high-quality masks and gloves, 1000 individual protection kits, 700 kits for doctors working with infectious diseases, etc.

One example of specific Russian assistance to the epidemic-stricken Italy is the participation of Russian teams in the ongoing efforts to disinfect 65 nursing homes for the elderly. By 1 April, this work had already been finished at 17 sites. It is being done using Russian equipment and materials. Apart from that, Russian epidemiologists provide advice to local staff so as to ensure a sustained anti-epidemic regime at those facilities.

We would like to stress that this help is free of charge and humanitarian by nature. It is a sign of our solidarity with the Italian people, not linked to any political agenda.

The same is true for the United States. The arrangement for Russian humanitarian assistance was reached during the telephone conversation between the two Presidents on 30 March. A Defence Ministry plane was urgently dispatched to deliver aid to the US. Half of the cargo was paid for by the Russian Direct Investment Fund, while the other half was covered by the US government. This hardly makes it less humanitarian.

Russian assistance is an example of civilised humanitarian cooperation and mutual help, the best manifestation of the universal values that humaniy has been accumulating for centuries. One would hope that freedom of expression and the media, another important achievement of modern civilisation, should be used in order to disseminate true information in good faith. This is what the public needs in the current difficult environment. We wish BBC and other British journalists success in this work.

3 April 2020, 18:05


25.07.2020 - "Concerning the sensational report on Russia". Article from News Agency "RIA Novosti", 23 July 2020

The report was prepared before last year’s general election, but its publication was long delayed by the ruling Conservatives, and opponents of Boris Johnson accused him of doing it specifically to downplay the Russian threat and prevent his party from losing credibility. Now, however, the report, written in part by well-known retired MI-5 employee Christopher Style (creator of the file on Trump’s “Russian contacts”), has been published. The British press has been disappointed: there is no proof of Russian interference in the Brexit referendum (although they cannot understand how the British voted to leave the EU when most of the political elite, almost all of the press and the City were against it), although there are rumours of attempts to influence the Scottish independence referendum. This, however, is London’s point of view; from Moscow’s perspective, the report is sensational, because its authors’ conclusions are the best evidence that the British powers-that-be are prepared to work in the Kremlin’s interests. Style and Browder (another co-author of the report) do not in fact understand this, but this is the skill of the so-called KGB heirs’ game. But let’s start at the beginning.

16.07.2020 - The Human Rights Situation in Ukraine - Report of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation

The human rights situation in Ukraine continues to degrade. The Kyiv authorities adopt legislative acts contrary to the rules of national law and international obligations. Human rights activists document systemic violations of fundamental human rights and freedoms. Referring to the need to combat the so-called Russian aggression and separatism, political opponents, independent journalists, media outlets, and undesirable members of public organizations are being prosecuted. The rights of internally displaced persons, the Russian-speaking population, and representatives of national minorities are limited. The clergy and parishioners of the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church are being prosecuted. The right to liberty and security of person is not respected. In Ukraine, there are numerous facts of illegal detention, torture, intimidation, ill-treatment, sexual violence, including to obtain confessions or compel cooperation.

16.07.2020 - Embassy comment concerning today’s unfriendly statements by Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab

The Embassy has noted the statements by the UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab concerning unspecified “Russian actors” who have “almost certainly” sought to interfere in 2019 UK General Election through “online amplification” of sensitive documents relating to the UK-US Free Trade Agreement, as well as the alleged responsibility of “Russian Intelligence Services” for cyber attacks aimed at stealing research information on coronavirus vaccine development.

06.07.2020 - Embassy comment on the UK announcement of sanctions over the Magnitsky case

The decision by the British Government to impose sanctions against a number of Russian officials invoking the death of Sergei Magnitsky in 2009 reflects the self-declared status of the UK as the global leader in sanctions policy. All questions regarding the circumstances of Mr Magnitsky’s death have been answered long ago. Today’s decision was quite obviously conceived merely as a public move.

29.06.2020 - Embassy press officer’s reply to a media question on British media reports on Russian “collusion” with the Taliban in Afghanistan

Question: How would you comment on the recent reports in British media that Russia supposedly offered “bounty” to the Taliban to kill UK as well as US soldiers in Afghanistan?

16.05.2020 - Ambassador Andrei Kelin's letter to Financial Times

Dear Editor, I feel compelled to express disagreement with the Financial Times coverage of Russia’s efforts to combat the Covid-19 pandemic. Judging by your reports, Russia’s response has been to manipulate with figures at home and to spread disinformation abroad, with the government acting inefficiently and doctors having inadequate protection. This distorted picture requires a refutation. Even by most pessimistic accounts, Russia’s performance in terms of healthcare system capacity and death rate is among the best of all major countries.

15.05.2020 - Ambassador Andrei Kelin's letter to The Times

Sir, Roger Boyes is wondering why Russian industrialists (he calls them ‘oligarchs’) are helping to fight Covid-19. Are they suddenly ‘embracing philanthropy’, or ‘cleaning up their nasty image’, or else seeking to impose a ‘new compact’ on the ‘floundering’ government?

11.05.2020 - Statement by the Foreign Ministry concerning US attempts to rewrite the history of the Victory over Nazism

Attempts to distort the results of the defeat of Nazism and the decisive contribution our country made, which are continuing in Washington even during these days of universal celebration of the 75th anniversary of Victory, cause utter indignation.

08.05.2020 - Telephone conversation between Russian President Vladimir Putin and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson

Vladimir Putin had a telephone conversation with Prime Minister of Great Britain Boris Johnson. The President of Russia and the Prime Minister of Great Britain exchanged greetings on the 75th anniversary of Victory over Nazism, which became one of the greatest events of the 20th century and an example of unprecedented cooperation between the countries of the anti-Hitler coalition. Vladimir Putin noted in part that Russia remembers the exploits of the British sailors, participants in the Arctic convoys, owing to which the Soviet army and industry received arms and equipment needed during the war.

07.05.2020 - Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s telephone conversation with UK Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Dominic Raab

On May 6, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov had a telephone conversation with UK Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Dominic Raab at the latter's initiative. The two officials exchanged greetings in connection with the upcoming 75th anniversary of the victory in WWII. They noted the contribution of the members of the anti-Hitler coalition in the fight against Nazism, and emphasised the importance of using the alliance's experience in mobilising the international community's efforts to counteract today's global challenges. Particular attention was paid to discussing the efforts being taken to tackle the spread of the novel coronavirus infection and to overcome its effects.

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