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 RUSSIAN EMBASSY WEEKLY #132

 

PRESIDENT 


Telephone conversation with Donald Trump and Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, April 12

 

Russian President Vladimir Putin held phone conversation with the US President Donald Trump and the king of Saudi Arabia, Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud. The leaders discussed the OPEC+ deal and exchanged views on the oil market.
Putin, Trump and Salman support the OPEC+ decision to gradually cut oil production, according to a Kremlin press service statement.
"The leaders have supported the agreement reached by the OPEC+ on the phased voluntary reduction of oil production in order to stabilize global markets and ensure the sustainability of the global economy as a whole. This deal is coming into force," the statement read.
The parties also agreed that they would continue to be in contact with each other on the matter.
 
During the Putin-Trump phone conversation, the leaders discussed strategic security and exchanged views on the oil market. In addition, Putin wished Trump and US citizens, celebrating Easter, happy holidays.
"The exchange of views on the situation in the oil markets was continued. Once again, the importance of the OPEC+ deal to reduce oil production was noted. Pressing issues of ensuring strategic security were also discussed," the Kremlin press service statement read.
 
- Telephone conversation with Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia Mohammad bin Salman Al Saud April 10, 2020
- Telephone conversation with US President Donald Trump April 10, 2020
- Telephone conversation with Donald Trump and Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud April 10, 2020
 
READ ALSO: Message to Prime Minister of Great Britain Boris Johnson, Telephone conversation with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

 

COSMANAUTICS DAY


Happy Cosmonautics Day
 
On this day in 1961, a man encountered a flight into space for the very first time. It was the Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin who did it. We owe him today's holidays - #CosmonauticsDay and International Day of Human Space Flight! Congratulations to all our subscribers, and especially to the employees of the Russian space and rocket industry!
Our Cosmos is always with us - the cosmonaut at the reception hall of the Embassy.


Vladimir Putin congratulated the International Space Station crew on 
Cosmonautics Day marked on April 12
<…> Space exploration has always been and remains a token of progress and development for humankind, while activities in space open up more new prospects in the economy, science and social sphere with every coming year.
The orbit, including aboard your station, is a site for fundamental research in biology, medicine, physics and chemistry, a site where crucial practical problems are being resolved.
Russia has rich experience in international cooperation in space. We are happy that our specialists are successfully collaborating with their colleagues from the United States, one of the world’s leading space powers. It is a vivid example of an effective partnership between our countries for the benefit of the entire humanity.
We are now also trying to organise work on current problems. I do not like speaking about this but I have to. I mean the fight against the pandemic, as well as the situation in the global markets. The President of the United States and I discussed these issues just yesterday, and we will speak more on that topic. So, fortunately, cooperation is developing, and not only in space but also in other areas.
I would also note that the Cosmonaut Training Centre marked its 60th anniversary this year. A whole constellation of space explorers from over 25 countries was raised there.
And today, largely thanks to the Centre’s performance, the geography of nations sending their researchers into orbit keeps expanding. For example, a pilot from the United Arab Emirates was on board of the ISS last year.
Our country has always been a forerunner in exploring the universe. We will be doing everything to also pay attention to one of its crucial areas – manned space flights.
We will definitely continue pursuing our strategic plans on space exploration; we will be developing all our programmes.
By the way, today, ahead of Cosmonautics Day, we will discuss progress with the leaders of the industry, to adjust our plans, advance them, and do everything possible for them to materialise, including the construction of the new cosmodrome of Vostochny. <…>
 
READ ALSO: In Space We Trust
 
Vladimir Putin congratulated Russia’s Jewish community on Passover holiday
 
Vladimir Putin congratulated Russia’s Jewish community on Passover holiday
The message reads, in part:
“This ancient holiday reminds people of the Jewish faith of important and fateful events in biblical history: gaining their freedom and dignity.
It is important that Russian Jews cherish their ancestors’ customs and traditions and carefully pass them down from one generation to another. They remain deeply committed to unshakable spiritual and moral values and the ideals of good and justice. They actively participate in the good work of religious organisations as well as in Russia’s public and cultural life.
And, of course, I would like to note the Jewish community’s significant contribution to maintaining interfaith and interethnic dialogue and strengthening the centuries-old friendship between the peoples of Russia.”
 
 

FOREIGN MINISTRY 


Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s telephone conversation with
Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh

 
On April 10, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov had a telephone conversation with Prime Minister of the State of Palestine Mohammad Shtayyeh, at the initiative of the Palestinian side.
The ministers discussed the situation regarding the coronavirus pandemic and measures taken by the Russian and Palestinian authorities to counter the spread of the infection and mitigate its negative consequences.
When exchanging views on the Middle East peace process, the parties emphasised the importance of intensifying collective efforts in the interests of launching the Palestinian-Israeli negotiation process on a universally recognised international legal basis as soon as possible. They expressed mutual concern about unilateral action plans aimed at undermining the decisions of the UN and the Arab Peace Initiative. At the same time, the priority goal is to restore Palestinian national unity on the political platform of the Palestine Liberation Organisation.
 
Moscow and Washington have agreed to create a working group on outer space, and Russia is expecting to get a response to its proposals on the agenda of the dialogue in the coming weeks, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said on Saturday.
 
"In practical terms, the composition of the group has not yet been agreed on. We are at the stage of coordinating the agenda, that is, the topics based on which the work will be carried on," Ryabkov said.
"I can say that the immediate task is to agree on the agenda, after that a lot will become clear. But in any case, it’s a matter of weeks and months in the worst case, that is, it is the nearest foreseeable future. We would like to hear from the Americans a concrete reaction to those ideas and considerations on the agenda that we have recently passed on to them," Ryabkov noted.
 
Comment by the Information and Press Department on the Release of the first report by the OPCW Investigation and Identification Team (“Syrian Chemical Dossier”)
 
Established by the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) as a result of targeted political and legal manipulations by Western countries, the “attributive” Investigation and Identification Team (IIT) released, on April 8, the findings of its first, pilot report on the three alleged chemical incidents in the Syrian village of Ltamenah on March 24, 25 and 30, 2017. The main conclusion in this document, compiled as the Western countries’ political put-up job, is that “there are reasonable grounds to believe” that in all three instances, chemical weapons were used by the Syrian Arab Air Force, and the relevant orders had come directly from the higher authorities of the Syrian Arab Republic military command.
It was difficult to expect anything else from an entity that was heavily imposed by a narrow circle of “interested” states upon a purely technical body like the OPCW. They insisted on the creation of the IIT contrary to the fundamental provisions of the relevant Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) and the generally recognised precepts of international law. The IIT’s “powers,” as we have repeatedly noted, infringe on the sphere of exclusive prerogatives of the UN Security Council, as enshrined in the UN Charter.
The experts recruited for the IIT, mainly from Western countries, have carried out an impressive amount of work, as the OPCW Technical Secretariat leaders stated in their “presentation” of the report. They produced an 80-page document, predictably based on the already known and quite dubious “insights” of the OPCW Fact Finding Mission to investigate chemical incidents in Syria. It also includes the noticeable “signature” of the former OPCW-UN Joint Investigative Mechanism, which completely discredited itself with its anti-Assad bias.
The authors of the report, and consequently the leaders of the OPCW Technical Secretariat, have thus become accomplices in the consistent violation of the basic principles and procedures of objective and unbiased investigations stipulated in the CWC, which requires the mandatory dispatch of experts directly to the sites of alleged incidents. The information gathered by the IIT mostly came from anti-government armed groups and pseudo-humanitarian NGOs affiliated with them, including the notorious White Helmets. <…>
 
Briefing by Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova, Moscow, April 9, 2020
 

 
Comment by the Information and Press Department on the US President’s executive order on encouraging international support for the recovery and
use of space resources

 
We are closely watching statements and other actions by various states, including the US, that have recently demonstrated a much higher interest in the recovery,  exploration and use of the resources on the Moon and other celestial bodies.
Thus, we have noted the April 6 executive order by the US President.
First, the timing of this statement is indicative. It was released at a time when all of humanity is using all of its political, material and intellectual resources to resolve one of the most urgent problems today, the COVID-19 pandemic.
Second, it is unclear why the US administration wants to assume the leading role in creating a global agenda on this sensitive international issue. We believe that all states are equal in exploring and using outer space for peaceful purposes.
We will consider the current trend in the policies that certain states have adopted (outside the UN framework) on the exploration and use of resources in outer space. A continuation of this approach is fraught with serious risks for international cooperation and understanding, including in outer space.
We would like to emphasise that universally recognised principles and standards of international space law are the immutable foundation of this discussion. They are codified, in part, in the Outer Space Treaty of January 27, 1967, which holds that outer space, including the Moon and other celestial bodies, cannot be subject to national appropriation in any way.
We are convinced that clarity which meets the interests of the entire international community and which is necessary for implementing major programmes and projects on the exploration and use of outer space can only be created by the purposeful and consistent efforts of the states, which are responsible for the activities of their business entities.
We believe there is an urgent need for the international community to make a collective effort to prevent outer space, including the Moon and other celestial bodies, from becoming an arena for international discord and conflict.
We reaffirm our interest and willingness to hold a practical and open discussion on this issue with due observance of the norms and principles of international law, including the UN and its Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space. We also confirm our commitment to large-scale international cooperation on both the scientific and judicial aspects of the exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes.
This is how we will cooperate with the United States, based on our experience of joint space exploration over many decades.
 
 
Statement by the Foreign Ministry concerning the 10th anniversary of the signing of the New START Treaty between Russia and USA
 
On April 8, 2010, the Russian Federation and the United States of America signed the Treaty on Measures for the Further Reduction and Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms (New START Treaty). The Treaty was an important new step in developing Russia-US interaction to control nuclear weapons in the interests of strengthening international security and strategic stability. It reduced the strategic arsenals of the two countries to unprecedented levels and formed an effective mechanism of mutual transparency and predictability. Since the New START Treaty came into effect, the parties have conducted over 300 reciprocal inspections at each other's strategic facilities and have exchanged nearly 20,000 notifications. Matters related to the implementation of the Treaty are regularly reviewed by the Bilateral Consultative Commission established for this purpose.
The role and importance of the Treaty are growing significantly in today's difficult international conditions, as it remains virtually the only mechanism of arms control and limitation in relation to the strategic weapons of our two countries. We believe it is necessary to maintain this proven mechanism and to ensure that it remains viable. We are convinced that this would meet the interests of both Russia and the United States, as well as those of the entire international community, guarantee predictability in the nuclear weapons sphere, and help maintain strategic stability.
At the initiative of Russian President Vladimir Putin, in December 2019, an official offer was made to the American side to extend, without preconditions, the New START Treaty and to begin working through related practical issues. We look forward to a speedy response in the affirmative from the United States.

STOP COVID-19

 

EMBASSY

 
Question: Bearing in mind the rapid spread of the coronavirus in U.S. prisons, what measures were taken by the Embassy to protect Russian citizens serving sentences there?
Anatoly Antonov: The deteriorating situation with the COVID19 cannot but cause concern. We continue to strive for the release of Russians held in local prisons. I have written a letter to the U.S. Attorney General William Barr.
We called on to show humanity, take into account the humanitarian component of the issue and save human lives. We hope that in the face of the global challenge, the U.S. authorities will not remain indifferent and will respond to our requests positively.
Question: Do local human rights organizations assist you in protecting the rights of Russian citizens kept in U.S. correctional institutions?
Anatoly Antonov: We have repeatedly addressed the issues related to protecting rights of Russian prisoners to NGOs credible in the eyes of the international community. These are Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International USA, World Justice Project and many other organizations. However, we did not received any answers to our letters.
Last November, we again called to draw attention to outrageous cases of human rights violations in American prisons. There was no reaction.
 

STOP COVID-19

 
In the US, more and more Americans are starting to realize that the path of restrictions lead to a dead end. Human Rights Watch has joined the call for easing US sanctions against Iran
Inhuman restrictive measures against the Islamic Republic must be lifted.
We should stand together in the face of a common threat of proliferation of COVID19.
 
 
 
 
 

RUSSIAN CULTURE

 
“Boris Godunov” was first performed at The Bolshoi theatre in 1888. And after 132 years we will show this treasure online for the first time to the whole world on YouTube

HISTORY

 
Vladimir Putin signed the Federal Law On Amendments to the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation and the Criminal Procedure Code of the Russian Federation.
The Federal Law supplements the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation with Article 2434, which establishes criminal liability for destruction or damage perpetrated with the aim of damaging the historical and cultural significance of sites and objects, including: military burial sites located on the Russian territory or beyond, as well as monuments, stelas, obelisks and other memorial structures or objects commemorating those who perished while defending the Fatherland or its interests, or are dedicated to the days of Russia’s military glory (including memorial museums or memorial signs on battlefields), as well as monuments, other memorial structures or objects dedicated to persons who defended the Fatherland or its interests.
At the same time, the Federal Law stipulates the amendment of a number of articles of the Criminal Procedure Code of the Russian Federation in the part concerning the determination of court and territorial jurisdiction of criminal cases under Article 2434 of the Criminal Code, as well as investigative jurisdiction and the location of the preliminary investigation of such crimes.
On this day 75 years ago Soviet Embassy Information Bulletin published the following:

 - Frontlines in Austria
-  Fighting in the Hungarian Oil District
-  On the Vienna Front
-  Soviet Women at the War
-  Girl Marines
-  Fifth anniversary of Karelian Soviet Republic
-  For capture of Berlin in 1760
 - A concert of Russian Church Music
 
"Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture, performed in the third part of the program, is a perfect specimen of Russian patriotic music. Its content is closely bound up with the grim events of the Napoleonic invasion, when the whole Russian people rose to the defense of their country, smashed the mighty enemy and defended their honor and independence.
This work, Russian in spirit and content, shows how all the forces of the country were united to ward off the enemy, and how they achieved victory over him. In the finale the melody of Glinka's well-known song "Glory. Glory to the Russian People", which Tchaikovsky borrowed and used as the musical symbol of the Russian nation, rings out triumphantly.
A little later, when in the finale of Tchaikovsky’s overture glorifying the Russian people and the Russian army of 1812 the triumphant pealing of bells rang out — simultaneously the Moscow artillery salvos saluted the valiant Red Army whose might and heroism are a guarantee of rapid and complete victory over fascism."
On April 6 10 years ago, an outstanding Russian-Soviet diplomat, the USSR’s Ambassador to the US from 1962 to 1986, Anatoly Dobrynin passed away. He made enormous efforts in settling the Cuban Missile Crisis, which became the brightest page of his biography.

 

STAY HOME AND STUDY IN RUSSIA


 
Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology provides free access to the public online courses in various topics. About 100 courses in English and Russian are available for prospective students. More information
 

STAY HOME AND STUDY RUSSIAN

 
Learning Russian is popular among prospective international students. Following is an overview of Russian language study options. The learners’ goals can differ: for some people, studying foreign languages is a hobby, some plan to enrol in Russian-taught programmes, while others are set to make Russian their professional occupation. Distance learning would be sufficient in the first case. Onsite training is for those who plan to take degree programmes in Russian. To become a specialist in the Russian language, you have to complete undergraduate or graduate programmes. Online courses

 

STAY HOME & VISIT RUSSIA


You are cordially invited to a virtual tour of the Russian Railways Museum in St. Petersburg! Take a stroll through its 39,000 square meters and see 118 unique rolling-stock exhibits without leaving your home.
 

ENJOY RUSSIA Visit Tuva
 

ENJOY RUSSIA Visit Siberia

 



WATCH RUSSIAN CARTOONS

Russian animation smash hit 'Masha and the Bear' is the most popular cartoon online. Its episode Recipe for Disaster gained 4,25 bln views on Youtube, is now the most popular non-musical video (№5 overall) – Watch in English

 
HISTORY

 

"Pipeline to Russia: The Alaska-Siberia Air Route in World War II" – now
available online!

This publication by the U.S. National Park Service and Alaska-Siberia Research Center is free for the public. You are welcome to download and share this book with your friends, colleagues and affiliated institutions, and keep this title in your e-library.

The heroism and dedication of the Soviet and American participants of the Alaska–Siberia Airway will not be forgotten. It is our civic duty to express our deep respect to those whose efforts led to the program’s success and, in the process, brought the war to a close. This is our history. Future generations should be brought up with a respectful spirit of patriotism to understand this history of cooperation between our countries. This edition will preserve awareness of that massive effort for all time.

DOWNLOAD THE BOOK

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