16 January 2018
Moscow: 14:49
London: 11:49

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The 69th session of the UN General Assembly has opened in New York on 16 September. We believe that it should aim at consolidating collective approaches to world affairs with a central coordinating role of the United Nations as a mechanism of unique legitimacy in ensuring global stability. The only way to address current threats and challenges in an effective and comprehensive manner is to use collectively coordinated approaches and agree on solutions that take into account the wide range of member states' positions.

At the heart of Russia’s position on the current UNGA agenda lies the need for the respect for international law, primarily the UN Charter, strengthening the role of the UN, strict adherence to the UN Security Council exclusive powers in maintaining international peace and security. Security Council decisions shall not allow for arbitrary interpretation and are binding on all members of the international community.
We support realistic initiatives to improve the effectiveness of the UN General Assembly. We are focusing on improving the working methods and streamlining the overloaded agenda. Any innovation must be based on a strict compliance with division of prerogatives among the main UN bodies. The same goes for the UN Security Council reform that should be aimed at achieving broader representation without damaging the effectiveness and efficiency of its work. It is necessary to keep searching for a reform model that would enjoy the broadest support within the UN (much stronger than two-thirds of votes of its members). The prerogatives of the current permanent members, including their right of veto, must remain intact. Setting artificial deadlines is hardly helpful.
When it comes to regional problems, we hope they will receive a proper assessment, and workable solutions will be found at the session. For instance, the domestic crisis in Ukraine can only be settled through political and diplomatic means, on the basis of cessation of all violence and a launch of a broad and inclusive national dialogue. It must address the legitimate aspirations of all regions of the country, its linguistic and ethno-confessional groups at the constitutional level. We insist on objective and impartial investigation of cases of significant violence, and on bringing those responsible to justice. It is crucial to abandon the neo-Nazi ideology, the glorification of war criminals and the Nazi accomplices in the territory of Ukraine. Russia is ready to make a humble contribution to settling the crisis, defusing the situation, strengthening confidence in Ukraine and restoring its stability in a sustainable way. Such an objective and an impartial approach should be the foundation of any crisis settlement.
As regards to Syria, we reiterate that the Syrian conflict is to be settled only by peaceful means and through an inclusive political dialogue on the basis of the 2012 Geneva Communique and the agreed agenda. The Montreux International Conference established all the necessary prerequisites for that. Joining the efforts of the government and the opposition in the fight against the terrorist threat, which creates risks of regional destabilization, remains one of the priorities.
Russia hopes that objectivity and impartiality will dominate the 69th UNGA session with the aim to achieving genuine consensus on acute regional conflicts. The session should contribute to mutual understanding between states and, thus, to the build-up of confidence and stability in world affairs.



29.11.2017 - Afghan opium production jumps to record level (by Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko for RT)

According to the latest Afghanistan Opium Survey released by the Afghan Ministry of Counter Narcotics and United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), in 2017 opium production in Afghanistan increased by 87 per cent to a record level of 9,000 metric tons. The area under opium poppy cultivation also grew by 63 per cent to its highest level of 328,000 hectares. Afghanistan is the world's top cultivator of the poppy from which opium and heroin are produced. The 2017 record levels of opium production and poppy cultivation create multiple challenges for the country, its neighbours and many other countries that serve as a transit for or a destination of Afghan opiates. The significant levels of opium poppy cultivation and illicit trafficking of opiates fuel instability, insurgency and increase funding to terrorist groups in Afghanistan.

19.10.2017 - Why to fight with memorials (by Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

The campaign in Poland against World War II memorials to Soviet officers and soldiers, who had liberated the country from the Nazi occupation, is gaining momentum. Warsaw has created a legal framework allowing the disposal of Soviet/Russian memorial objects or taking them out of public sight, including the most widespread monuments of gratitude to the Red Army. Why?

18.10.2017 - Syria: collective humanitarian efforts, not sanctions, are needed more than ever (by Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

The situation in Syria is undergoing serious transformation. Due to the de-escalation process, it has now become possible to drastically reduce the level of violence, to improve the humanitarian situation as well as to fight terrorists more efficiently. The ISIS-controlled territory is shrinking. On 14-15 September, at the international meeting in Astana all four de-escalation zones were finalized.

05.10.2017 - What You Have to Know about Status of Crimea (by Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

The coup d’état in Kiev in February 2014 backed by the West tore up the constitutional space in Ukraine. The legitimate President of the country was overthrown. It was marked by a severe lack of democracy and violence that posed a direct threat to the well-being of Russian-speaking population of Crimea. Citizens of Crimea faced the choice of becoming an oppressed minority or severing their ties with the hostile regime to secure a future for themselves and their children. The decision to hold a referendum was made by legitimate local authorities. The independence of Crimea was proclaimed and an appeal to enter the Russian Federation was made based on the indisputable results of the popular vote. Standards of international law were fully observed as the right of nations to self-determination enshrined in the UN Charter was exercised freely by the Crimeans. Crimea was recognized as an independent and sovereign state by Russia and on 18 March 2014 in Moscow the two countries signed a Treaty of Unification, under which the Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol became two new regions - subjects of the Russian Federation.

05.10.2017 - NATO increased military presence in Europe: road to nowhere (by Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

As part of the implementation of the conclusions of the NATO Summit in Warsaw, four multinational battlegroups have been deployed in Poland, Estonia, Lithuania and Latvia with the total number of troops exceeding 4500. The idea of creating similar rotating units in Bulgaria and Romania in 2018 is being widely discussed by NATO members. If put together, these battlegroups amount to a motorized infantry brigade with heavy weapons.

30.09.2017 - Russia’s initiative on protecting SMM OSCE in South-East of Ukraine (by Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

On 5th September, at the 9th BRICS Summit in Xiamen President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin has announced an initiative to establish the United Nations Mission on Support in Protecting the Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) OSCE in the South-East of Ukraine.

25.09.2017 - Eurasian Economic Union today (by Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

Though hardly noticeable in the Western media, the Eurasian economic cooperation is booming, with the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) becoming an increasingly effective integration project. The unique format of enhanced economic coordination along with the EAEU member states’ retained political sovereignty and cultural identity is proving itself.

25.09.2017 - On Russia's assistance to Central Asia (by Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

Russia attaches great importance to the issue of sustainable development as it is underlined by the UN. Among our priorities in this area is the development of Central Asia. We contribute to the development of this region on a regular basis, regardless of the global economic crisis and its negative effect on Russia’s economy. In today’s world, international aid is often politically motivated and aimed at exerting one’s influence. Russia has a different approach.

25.09.2017 - IX BRICS Summit – turning into a global organisation (by Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

The 9th BRICS summit in Xiamen, China, has emphasized the proximity of positions of the member states on the current global problems. It demonstrated that over the last 10 years BRICS has grown into a full-fledged international mechanism for global cooperation.

08.09.2017 - SCO sets standards for countering extremism (by Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

In June 2017, the leaders of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) signed the SCO Convention on Countering Extremism, which will help strengthen the international legal framework to address new challenges and threats as well as increase the effectiveness of cooperation between relevant authorities of the member states and to improve legislation in this area.

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