28 February 2017
Moscow: 15:16
London: 12:16

Consular queries:  
+44 (0) 203 668 7474  




Briefing by Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova, September 10, 2015

Mongolian Foreign Minister Lundegiyn Purevsuren’s working visit to Russia.

Mongolian Foreign Minister Lundegiyn Purevsuren will pay a working visit to Russia on September 10-12. During the visit, talks will take place between the two countries’ foreign ministers. They are expected to address the status and prospects for the further development of Russia-Mongolia relations in the context of the agreements reached at the top level during President Vladimir Putin’s visit to Ulan Bator in September 2014 and Mongolian President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj’s visit to Moscow in May. The ministers will also consider the most topical regional and global issues and key aspects of Russia-Mongolia interaction in various international and regional formats.

The visit programme includes Mr Purevsuren’s consultations with Sergey Donskoy, chairman of the Russian section of the Russian-Mongolian Intergovernmental Commission on Trade, Economic, Scientific and Technical Cooperation and minister of natural resources and the environment, and Minister of Agriculture Alexander Tkachyov, to discuss the development of Russia-Mongolia cooperation on the practical level.

Joint meeting of CSTO Council of Foreign Ministers, Council of Defence Ministers, and Committee of Security Council Secretaries

On September 15, 2015, a joint session of the Council of Foreign Ministers, Council of Defence Ministers, and Committee of Security Council Secretaries of the Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO) will take place in Dushanbe as part of the preparations for the upcoming session of the CSTO Collective Security Council, which will be attended by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

Participants will discuss ways of upgrading the collective security system and developing military cooperation and allied interaction in the organisation’s framework.

As the CSTO presidency passes from the Republic of Tajikistan to the Republic of Armenia, special consideration will be given to the priorities of Armenia’s CSTO presidency.

A draft statement by the heads of state, as well as a number of documents prepared for the CSTO Collective Security Council session, will be considered.

Participants will also address organisational, administrative and financial aspects of the organisation’s activity.

The situation in Ukraine

The ceasefire, which is generally holding now, is an important step towards the de-escalation of the situation in southeastern Ukraine. Over the past two weeks, the situation in Donbass, where residential areas came under regular shelling attacks until only recently, remains relatively calm. This is confirmed by the Russian and Ukrainian representatives of the Joint Coordination and Control Centre (JCCC) and OSCE observers.

The signing of an addendum to the Package of Measures for the Implementation of the Minsk Agreements of December 12, 2015, related to the withdrawal of tanks, mortars of a 120-mm caliber and lower, and artillery systems of a 100-mm caliber and lower, as well as an appendix on verification measures, would help further ease tensions in the region and create prerequisites for a real, long-term truce.

Unfortunately, at its September 8 meeting in Minsk, the Contact Group failed to do so. We hope that the ongoing efforts within the framework of the relevant subgroup will be capped with success and the said documents will be signed by all participants in the Minsk talks.

Unfortunately, at this stage, we have been unable to record positive changes regarding the lifting of the financial and economic blockade of Donbass. Just the contrary, it is only tightening, leading to the further degradation of the humanitarian situation there. This is also recognised by the Kiev office of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). At a recent briefing in the Ukrainian capital, its head, Barbara Manzi, said that there was a visible shortage of foodstuffs and medications in the southeast of the country, noting that the people in the region were in a miserable state and on the brink of survival.

Meanwhile, UN experts point out that Kiev lacks the political will to overcome the consequences of the severe humanitarian crisis in Donbass and note its reluctance to help its own citizens who desperately need emergency assistance.

Such a policy pursued by the Ukrainian authorities, which ignores the legitimate rights and demands of the Donbass people and rejects direct dialogue with Donetsk and Lugansk, will only lead to the region’s further insulation. The establishment of a direct dialogue is key to peace and stability in southeastern Ukraine. This is related primarily to the fundamental provisions that are unambiguously recorded in the Package of Measures as being subject to coordination with the Donetsk and Lugansk representatives. These include the establishment of Donbass’s permanent legal status, defining the procedure for holding local elections in these territories and taking the interests of the southeast into account on a constitutional level.

In this context, we would also like to remind you that in February, representatives of Kiev, Donetsk and Lugansk agreed in Minsk not only on a ceasefire but also on a “postwar” stage, if I may say so, in the development of Donbass.

In particular, the Minsk Agreements reaffirm the need to take measures to ensure the region’s economic revival and improve the humanitarian situation there. Right now, ahead of the upcoming winter season, it is critical to address the most pressing problems related to the provision of civilians in southeastern Ukraine with first necessities – water, electricity, food, medical assistance and communications.


27.02.2017 - Statement by Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Sergey Lavrov at the farewell ceremony with Vitaly Churkin

We bid farewell to our friend, an outstanding diplomat of our times, who achieved the utmost everywhere he was posted by his Motherland. All of us, diplomats at the Ministry of the Foreign Affairs, understand that this is a tribute to our profession.

22.02.2017 - Comment by the Information and Press Department regarding media question on the internal Libyan crisis

We have taken note of the February 19 interview which Fayez al-Sarraj, Chairman of the Presidential Council of Libya and Prime Minister of the Government of National Accord, gave to Reuters on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference. He said he had a positive view on Russia’s role in resolving the Libyan crisis. In that interview, Libyan Prime Minister mentioned the possibility of Russia acting as an intermediary between the Tripoli government and political factions in eastern Libya.

22.02.2017 - Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s telephone conversation with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson

On February 21, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov spoke by phone with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson at the initiative of the US side.

21.02.2017 - Embassy comment on Russia’s decision to recognize the validity of documents issued by the de-facto authorities in Donetsk and Lugansk

The decision to accept ID’s and other documents issued by the de-facto authorities in Donetsk and Lugansk (East Ukraine) does not imply Russia’s legal recognition of the said authorities.

21.02.2017 - Security Council Press Statement on Passing Away of Ambassador Vitaly Churkin

The members of the Security Council were deeply saddened to learn of the death of Ambassador Vitaly Churkin, prominent Russian diplomat and Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the United Nations on 20 February 2017.

20.02.2017 - Sergey Lavrov’s answer to a media question on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference, February 18, 2017

Question: How do you feel about the questions? Were they easy, as usual? Sergey Lavrov: They were predictable, given our Western colleagues’ fixation on seeing Russia as the only party responsible for the settlement of the Ukrainian crisis. Their fixation on this cybersecurity and cyber espionage agenda is equally and utterly incomprehensible. Not a single fact implicating Russia has been cited in the presence of a number of facts pointing in a different direction towards the real source of this unlawful activity. We are doing our best to make our position clear.

20.02.2017 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks and answers to media questions following a G20 ministerial meeting and the Munich Security Conference, Munich, February 18, 2017

Our meetings in Germany are almost over. We spent a day and a half in Bonn and two days in Munich, at a meeting of the G20 foreign ministers in Bonn and the annual international security conference in Munich, which is nearing completion. You attended my speech there, and today I am ready to answer your questions if you have any.

17.02.2017 - Concept paper on the Joint Group (Agreed on as the outcome of the International Meeting on Syria in Astana, February 16. 2017)

The Islamic Republic of Iran, the Russian Federation and the Republic of Turkey (hereinafter – the Parties) pursuant to the Joint Statement on the International Meeting on Syria in Astana (January 23-24, 2017, Kazakhstan) decide to establish the Joint Group as part of a trilateral mechanism to observe and ensure foil compliance with the ceasefire regime in the Syrian Arab Republic; prevent provocations; determine all modalities of the ceasefire, including separating terrorist groups ISIL/DAESH and "Al-Nusra Front" from the armed opposition groups in order to consolidate the ceasefire regime; strengthen confidence-building measures and discuss other related issues that can contribute to the UN-sponsored intra-Syrian negotiations on a political solution based on UN Security Council resolution 2254.

17.02.2017 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s comment and answers to media questions following talks with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Bonn, February 16, 2017

We have held a meeting with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. It was a pragmatic and business-like meeting, which I would describe as productive in that we compared our views on prospects for working together in the areas which our presidents discussed in principle during their telephone conversation on January 28. We reaffirmed the existence of similar or identical interests, primarily with regard to the irreconcilable struggle against terrorism in the context of our cooperation within the political settlement in Syria and other countries where terrorism has taken root. We also discussed the situation in Afghanistan and Ukraine. Our American partners have expressed interest in joining the efforts that are being taken to settle these conflicts.

16.02.2017 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s opening remarks during talks with the UN Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura, Moscow, February 16, 2017

I would like to welcome you in Moscow in a very timely visit. And just on the eve of the long-awaited, long-expected resumption of the negotiations in accordance with the Resolution 2254 in Geneva and just on the very day when another round of consultations is being held in Astana in the context of the meeting between the Government and opposition with mediation of the Russian Federation, Iran and Turkey.

all messages