RUSSIAN EMBASSY WEEKLY #141
President Vladimir Putin: I would like to extend greetings on this important holiday to all the country’s citizens and our compatriots abroad, all those who see an intimate meaning in this day.
For each of us, Motherland means family and our parents’ home, our native land, from Kaliningrad to Kamchatka and the Kuril Islands, from the northern Arctic seas to Sevastopol and Crimea. Our millennia-long history has been made on these endless expanses, filled with pages of great glory and pride, the unsurpassed courage of our ancestors, their faith in and love of the Fatherland.
The clear innermost feeling of Motherland has always, at all times, helped our people to endure all tribulations, to persevere and preserve themselves in harsh ordeals, and respond to any challenges.
Here, on Poklonnaya Gora we recall heroes who defended the Fatherland, its freedom and independence, and this memory is common and sacred for all generations, for the whole multi-ethnic people of Russia. We have a common historical code and moral foundations. Respect for the working person and the defender of the Fatherland, traditions and culture, preservation of the memory of our ancestors, respect for one’s parents and family, love for our land and the inviolability of our borders have an unconditional value for us.
These are the foundations that determine the character and destiny of our people, the progress of the country both today and in future. It is therefore natural that suggestions were voiced that these fundamental and cornerstone principles be included in the Russian Constitution. I am sure that the absolute majority of our citizens share and support this position.
Love for the Motherland and our love for the mother that gave us life are feelings of the same order. They empower us and give us hope, inspire us to feats of arms and great labour achievements. It has always been like that, in all historical eras.
<…> Russia’s wellbeing and prosperity undoubtedly depend on personal labour in its broadest sense – on doctors, teachers and cultural figures, athletes, coaches, workers and farmers, engineers, production managers, on everyone in the country who sets high constructive goals for themselves.
This is why it is so important that each person have every opportunity for self-attainment, so that they can work and receive a worthy and fair wage while their rights are reliably protected. Such attention to and special support for people who work hard is a precondition for progress in all areas – in the economy and social sphere, in technological development, culture and sport.
I am confident that we will see such achievements, and they will multiply because we are a united multi-ethnic people.
The national flag of Russia is a symbol of our unity, sovereignty and independence. It embodies our victories, our forward-looking commitment. Today, the national flag of the Russian Federation was ceremoniously hoisted here on Poklonnaya Gora on Russia Day.
Once again, I congratulate the citizens of our country as well as our compatriots abroad on this holiday. And I congratulate you again, dear friends, on your well-deserved awards.
Thank you. Thank you very much.
Kenozero National Park is a specially protected natural area, and an outstanding example of a Northern European cultural landscape. Here, among the dense forests and marshes, man and nature continue to coexist harmoniously, preserving the unique features of the archetypal Russian way of life, its culture and traditions.
Measures taken by the two countries to combat the coronavirus were discussed. Both sides noted the importance of consolidating the efforts of the international community to overcome the consequences of the pandemic and expressed a willingness to participate in this joint work.The leaders also exchanged views on current issues on the regional agenda, in particular, developments in Syria and Libya and the Middle East settlement.It was agreed to continue contacts at various levels.
Vladimir Putin extended his birthday greetings to pianist, People’s Artist of Russia Denis Matsuyev.
The message reads, in part:“A man of outstanding and exuberant talent, you have devoted yourself to art; with your unique skills, actor’s temperament and magnificent repertoire you have conquered the most famous stages of the world and made a great contribution to the preservation of the wonderful traditions of our culture and the education of young musicians.”Denis Matsuyev was born on June 11, 1975, in Irkutsk. He graduated from the Pyotr Tchaikovsky Moscow State Conservatory. The pianist performs at the world’s most famous concert halls; he is an important participant in major music festivals and a permanent partner of the leading symphony orchestras of Russia, Europe, North America and Asia.
Vladimir Putin had a telephone conversation with President of the Republic of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
The presidents exchanged greetings on the 100th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Russia and Turkey (established on June 3, 1920). They reaffirmed their commitment to further developing the mutually beneficial partnership.The two leaders touched on the current aspects of countering the coronavirus pandemic and stressed the importance of gradual but full resumption of trade, economic, cultural and humanitarian ties in pace with the lifting of restrictions.During their in-depth discussion of the developments in Libya, they expressed their concerns over the continued large-scale armed clashes in the country with resulting victims and destruction. Vladimir Putin noted that it was important to adhere to a ceasefire as soon as possible and to resume the intra-Libyan dialogue based on the decisions of the Berlin International Conference on January 19, 2020, and approved by UN Security Council Resolution 2510, as well as other initiatives aimed at a political and diplomatic settlement of the conflict.The two leaders also mentioned developments in Syria and emphasised that it was necessary to step up their efforts to implement the Russian-Turkish agreements on the Idlib de-escalation zone, including the Additional Protocol to the Sochi Memorandum dated September 17, 2018, and adopted on March 5, 2020, in Moscow. The joint priority tasks include control over the ceasefire and neutralisation of terrorist groups active in Idlib.The presidents agreed to maintain regular contact in various formats.
Vladimir Putin congratulated residents of Karelia on the Republic’s 100th anniversary.
“This anniversary is a landmark event and a true celebration for everybody who sincerely loves their native land and is proud of its history, unique natural wealth and the authentic traditions and customs of the local people. Over the last century, thanks to many generations of Karelians, the Republic has built new cities and towns, energy and transport infrastructure facilities, and developed its timber and mining industries. Of course, this year, as we celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Great Victory, I would like to offer special words of gratitude to Great Patriotic War veterans – frontline soldiers, partisans, undercover resistance fighters, home front workers and everybody who defended our Motherland from the enemy and restored the country after the war.
Today, Karelia has significant development potential and there is a wide range of options for major investment in the priority sectors of its economy, the social sphere and tourism. It is important to continue focusing on improving quality of life and on preserving the region’s unique cultural and spiritual heritage.
I am confident that initiative, energy and determination will help you to handle immense tasks that are vital for the benefit of the Republic and the whole of Russia.”
Vladimir Putin had a telephone conversation with Federal Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany Angela Merkel at the German side’s initiative.
Vladimir Putin and Angela Merkel discussed current issues related to countering the coronavirus pandemic and confirmed their commitment to further close cooperation between the health ministries and other relevant agencies.The two leaders continued to exchange views on the state of affairs in resolving the internal Ukrainian conflict and expressed concern about the lack of progress in implementing the 2015 Minsk agreements and the decisions taken following the Normandy summit in Paris in 2019. The importance of stepping up the negotiation process in the Contact Group and in the Normandy format was noted. The Russian President again emphasised the relevance of establishing a direct dialogue between Kiev and the republics of Donetsk and Lugansk, aimed at, among other things, agreeing on steps for the consistent implementation of the Minsk Package of Measures.Vladimir Putin and Angela Merkel expressed concern about the escalation of hostilities in Libya and emphasised that a speedy ceasefire and launch of intra-Libyan negotiations under the auspices of the UN were essential. The Russian side gave a positive assessment of Egypt’s mediation efforts to peacefully settle the Libyan crisis, following on from the decisions of the Berlin International Conference held on January 19 of this year.Key aspects of developments in Syria, including those related to the humanitarian needs of the population of the republic, were also discussed.It was agreed on further contacts.
Vladimir Putin had a telephone conversation with President of the Arab Republic of Egypt Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, at the Egyptian side’s initiative.The situation in Libya was discussed in detail. The Egyptian President informed his Russian counterpart about the talks held in Cairo on June 6 with President of the Libyan House of Representatives Aguila Saleh and Commander of the Libyan National Army Khalifa Haftar, where steps were proposed for a political settlement of the Libyan crisis. The Russian side praised the diplomatic efforts undertaken by Egypt. The two leaders reaffirmed their mutual interest in continued coordination of efforts to ensure a speedy cessation of hostilities and the launch of inter-Libyan negotiations under the auspices of the UN.Also, the parties discussed current issues of further development of the Russian-Egyptian strategic partnership, including cooperation in industry, nuclear energy, and joint efforts in fighting the coronavirus infection.
MINISTRY OF DEFENCE
<…> While the Syrian government is making every effort to restore peaceful life and ensure the safety of citizens, the United States continues to destabilize the situation in the country, preventing the return of citizens to their homes and the provision of humanitarian assistance through the UN in the territories controlled by the Syrian government. At the same time, a critical situation persists in the territories occupied by US troops, in the area of et-Tanf and in the area east to Euphrates, which is aggravated by the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.Of particular concern are the unresolved humanitarian problems in the "Rukban" refugee camp, where US-controlled armed groups continue to forcibly detain Syrian civilians who are forced to eke out a miserable existence due to the political ambitions of the US side. The United States, which occupies the 55-km zone of et-Tanf, has not yet taken any anti-epidemic measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus infection in the camp. The lack of qualified medical care, personal protective equipment, testing and barrier control in a high-density environment of refugees living in complete unsanitary conditions can lead to a sharp outbreak of COVID-19 disease. The indifference of the US side is surprising, as it is the most affected country, which ranks first in terms of morbidity and mortality in the world, fully understands the danger of this infection for humans and at the same time calmly observes at what is happening in "Rukban".<…> A serious problem remains the desire of the United States and its allies, under any pretext, to avoid interacting with the Syrian authorities on humanitarian issues, which persistently promote the extension of existing and opening of new cross-border channels, allegedly necessary for the implementation of humanitarian supplies. In fact, most of the cargo delivered falls into the hands of the militants under their control.<…> We demand that the US side stop exerting a destabilizing influence on the situation in the Syrian Arab Republic and strictly observe international law and the principles of the United Nations. We are convinced that the further occupation of the territories of Syria by the United States and its allies increases the suffering of civilians and delays the return of peaceful life in the country.
Question: The US ambassador to Poland Georgette Mosbacher, stated that the Americans can relocate their nuclear weapons from Germany to Poland. How will Moscow react to such actions if they are implemented?
Vladimir Titov: Such a statement on the part of the US ambassador is rather a finishing touch to the picture of relations between the US and Germany, as well as a reaction to internal political debates in Germany regarding the need to stockpile foreign nuclear arsenals on its territory. Without giving assessments to the specific initiatives of foreign countries within military-political blocs, it can be noted that using means of pressure on their partners and contrasting some of their allies with others is an unconstructive approach. It is even more paradoxical when third countries, in this case Poland, join such situations voluntarily and with zeal. Whatever military potential threatening our country is deployed in Poland, the Russian competent agencies will take all-out retaliatory measures.
Russia doesn’t see that China is ready for trilateral arms control talks with the United States and doesn’t think this position will be changed, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said on Tuesday.
"We don’t see any Chinese readiness to do so and so we do not anticipate that this approach would change anytime soon," he said during a videoconference of the New York Council on Foreign Relations. "And we do not intent to use whatever tools in our capacity to change this because it a sovereign choice of any country."
According to the Russian senior diplomat, the United States’ intention to involve China to bilateral arms control talks only complicates dialogue on that matter.
He said that the extension of the New START Treaty will give time to work out measures of control over new types of weapons, including hypersonic arms.
"In absence of any clear understanding, or more importantly, common understanding of what to do here, the easiest way to buy time would be to extend the existing treaty as ratified in 2010 in both capitals and then use the five years of this treaty extension to continue exchanges and find probably a better way to address all sorts of issues including those associated with new military technologies. We have many concerns of what is going on the in the American buildup. These are American missile defenses becoming more and more global, these are perspectives for the US weapons in outer space, these are hypersonic weapons <…> and many more," he said. "All these issues require a very different approach to what has been before rather than arithmetic counting of warheads and delivery means."
Number of participants in arms control treaties unlikely to change. It is hardly possible that more participants join arms control agreements any time soon, Ryabkov said.
"We would welcome multilateralization of an arms control, but we do not see any particular perspective for this to happen any time soon," Ryabkov said during a videoconference of the New York Council on Foreign Relations.
In his words, Russia shows utmost respect to every country’s national stance on this issue, including China.
"And we do not believe that China would agree to something like this," he added.
The Russian diplomat reiterated that Russia and the United States should extend the New START treaty on a bilateral basis first. In his opinion, the scenario under which Washington’s unilateral actions lead to complete demolition of the arms control framework must be avoided.
"Arctic can still be maintained as an area of cooperation rather than an area of competition," he said during a videoconference of the New York Council on Foreign Relations. "We recognize the fragility of the environment there and we have applied substantial efforts to improve international cooperation in this area."
"We will not in any way stay quiet though if someone, and I am in no mood of finger-pointing, would try to test our readiness to defend our interests interests of national security in this area."
He admitted that due to the climate change and new technologies deployed in the Arctic the situation in the area now differs dramatically from that of some time ago.
"The only way forward would be to have more dialogue, more exchanges, more joint effort to diminish the level of mistrust and try to find practical ways how to do positive things together there," Ryabkov stressed. "I think our Canadian, Danish and other colleagues are inclined to consider this approach together with the US and Russia and others involved.".
"We are in a very intense and professional dialogue with the US through our military channels. Deconflicting is functional. It’s a good experience that we are hopeful could be used elsewhere as well, and we reconfirm our interest to improve bilateral agreement with the US to avoid dangerous military activities and an arrangement on avoidance of dangerous military incidents. To prop on this Syrian experience would be right in this case as well," Ryabkov said during a videoconference of the New York Council on Foreign Relations.
"All in all, we have, I would say, more contentious and difficult issues rather than interfaces for our common work with the US on Syria," the Russian diplomat continued. "We will do our utmost to ensure that the US understands properly what we are doing, why we are doing these things or that things there, and we will expand the interfaces of our dialogue with the US if the US reciprocates, if the US wants so. We are ready, on our part".
RUSSIA DAY 2020
We would like to thank all Americans who value the relations between us, respect and love both the culture of the United States and the culture of Russia.Visit our special page, dedicated to Russia Day 2020 with congratulations from the friends of our country, movies, travel destinations in Russia and more:
There are no positive signals from the United States on prolonging the Treaty on Measures for the Further Reduction and Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms (the New START) and the treaty has only several months to remain in force, Russia’s Ambassador to the United States Anatoly Antonov said on Saturday in a live broadcast of the ‘Great Game’ program on Russia’s TV Channel One.Moscow wants to get a clear picture, in which direction the United States intends to proceed in the field of strategic security, Ambassador Antonov said."We see that today there is actually no security architecture. There is the New START Treaty, which has only several months to live"."I am speaking quite pessimistically because I cannot see any positive signals on this issue so far".However, Moscow will continue struggling for keeping this mechanism."But the US moves should be perceived calmly," Anatoly Antonov noted.‘We will be able to live without the New START quite well because the Russian Federation is a responsible nuclear state that conducts predictable foreign policy in this area," the Ambassador said.Commenting on the strategic security talks scheduled for June 22 in Vienna between Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov and US Special Presidential Representative for Arms Control Marshall Billingslea, the Ambassador said he hoped that these consultations would be "constructive and will make it possible to map out specific steps for remedying the situation in the sphere of strategic security".
This is one of the most incredible tourist destinations in Russia. It boasts around 300 volcanoes in the same spot, loads of bears, a valley of geysers, and other mind-blowing things.
READ MORE in a special series of articles about Kamchatka region
"Dear compatriots, I would like to congratulate with Russia Day from the bottom of my heart. This date unites everyone who treasures Russia, who speaks Russian as their native language, who carries Russian culture and history with them," the ambassador said in a video message published on Thursday on the official Youtube channel of the Russian diplomatic mission."We commend the involvement of the Russian community in America in the life of our country. <…>
I would like to wish good health, prosperity and success in all endeavors to all our compatriots. I hope you and your relatives and loved ones in Russia are well, and I wish you more opportunities to visit each other. You represent our country in the USA, and in this sense, you are diplomats as well. We count on your help in the improvement of Russian-American relations and in the fight against Russophobia. I am sure that we will rise to this task together," Antonov said.
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"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.
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