13 December 2017
Moscow: 21:48
London: 18:48

Consular queries:  
+44 (0) 203 668 7474  
info@rusemb.org.uk  

 

SPEECHES, INTERVIEWS, ARTICLES

13.10.2015

"Russian airstrikes won't solve the crisis" because they are Russian? (article by Andrey A. Pritsepov, Consul General of the Russian Federation in Edinburgh, published in "The Scotsman")

Having read your leader comments "Russian airstrikes won't solve crisis" from 30th September and "Effort needed to rein in lone wolf" from 2nd October I cannot help but notice that they represent a U-turn compared to your previous instalments (for instance, from 17th July "Conservatives made to look very bad again" and from 21st July "PM needs to do more to beat IS").
Two months ago the Scotsman among others elaborated that: "There is no doubt that IS is a horrific and barbaric organisation that poses a clear and present danger to everyone it deems an enemy, and that amounts to just about everyone who is not IS. Airstrikes against this menace [Islamic State] are to be welcomed, in fact, there is a compelling case to increase military action against it by the alliance of nation ranged against it" and maintained that "Islamic State is a poison and there does have to be action taken against it. That action needs to be on a number of fronts, including military strikes against the organisation in both Iraq and Syria".
Having quite passionately argued for a military intervention to handle this very menace you now conclude that "Russian airstrikes in Syria have heightened international tensions to new levels" and predict that "a period of worrying instability appears to be in prospect", calling for "wide international pressure" to be applied to my country in order to stop the actions you called for.
There must be a logical explanation for such a paradigm shift: something very dramatic should have occurred during the past two months that made you change your narrative so drastically. In fact, it has. Inefficiency of 420 days long aerial campaign against IS militants with more than 7 000 sorties, 2000 in Syria alone, has sparked acute refugee crisis in Europe, contributed to vast expansion of IS held territories in Syria and Iraq, allowed the reign of terror with further inhumane atrocities and sufferings of civilians, leaving Russia with no other option, but to intervene militarily to fight "IS menace" now, before it is too late. To maximize the efficiency of this surge we are not acting unilaterally, but in close coordination with countries involved, providing air support to local ground forces in their advance against IS in Syria.
The media campaign to misrepresent our actions came as no surprise. In fact, it had started even before Russian planes took off in Syria with quite predictable "unjustified stories" of civilian casualties and wrong jihadists being hit in the wrong places. These prime-time speculations seem to overshadow media coverage of even justified, real-life news, including the unspeakable tragedy of patients burnt alive in an airstrike against MSF hospital in Kunduz that still awaits to be commented by the Scotsman.
You rightly agree with what Russia was saying from Day One, namely that the conflict in Syria is a complex one. The other half of our arguments is that only people of Syria should decide its future and that Syrians deserve every international support in dealing with terrorists and creating necessary preconditions for democratic elections.
Advocating against Russian airstrikes aimed at terrorists in Syria would not put an end to this conflict, quite the contrary. Now when there is so much at stake, it's high time to set aside political grandstanding and focus on sustainable and long-lasting solution, which can only be achieved by joining forces to eradicate terrorist groups in Syria and reaching by means of multilateral diplomacy a sound political solution that could secure Syria's future as stable, secular and democratic country. Russia is actively involved in efforts to meet both these goals and is open for cooperation.




LATEST EVENTS

13.12.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the Presentation of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia by Russia 2018 Local Organising Committee.

Ladies and gentlemen, dear friends, I am pleased to welcome you to the Russian Embassy at the Presentation of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia by Russia 2018 Local Organising Committee. It’s a common knowledge, that football is the most popular game in the world. It is an honour for us to host the 2018 FIFA World Cup for the first time in the history of our country. I believe that those who come to Russia to support their national teams will leave with unforgettable memories.


08.12.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the Roscosmos "Sputnik" exhibition launch at Rossotrudnichestvo

Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the Roscosmos "Sputnik" exhibition launch at Rossotrudnichestvo (7 December 2017)


25.11.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the reception at the Embassy dedicated to Russian Film Week (24 November 2017)

Ladies and gentlemen, Dear friends First of all, I would like to pay tribute to the outstanding Russian opera singer Dmitri Hvorostovsky who passed away this week. In 2015 he gave a concert in this very hall. I am delighted to welcome you at our reception dedicated to the Russian Film Week and the environmental causes it champions. This year their charity partner is World Wide Fund for Nature, which runs many projects in Russia in coordination and with support of the Russian Government. Russia has a unique, fascinating wildlife. A number of this week’s films show the natural beauty of our land and are sure to raise awareness of how fragile this beauty is. We appreciate the WWF effort in Russia and worldwide and call on everybody to become a supporter, especially this year, marked as Year of Ecology in Russia.


20.11.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the launch of the Russian Film Week (19 November 2017)

Ladies and gentlemen, It is a pleasure for me to be at the opening of the second edition of the Russian Film Week here in London – which this year also spans to Cambridge and Edinburgh.


16.10.2017 - Unpublished letter to the Editor of The Times (sent 12 October)

Sir, If British MPs are free to speak out, wherever they wish, on any issue, why try to block their freedom of speech (“Helping Putin”, 11 October)? If a TV channel wants (and is legally bound) to present different points of view, why slam those who express these views? If the mere act of giving an interview to foreign media amounts to high treason, why does The Times interview Russian politicians without fear? And finally - while MPs critical of Russia are welcome guests on the Russian TV channel RT, does your paper give the same treatment to those critical of the paper’s owner? Konstantin Shlykov Press Secretary of the Embassy of the Russian Federation


25.09.2017 - PRESENTATION by Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk at the Christian Future of Europe Conference 22 September 2017, London

Your Eminences and Your Excellencies, dear Mr. Ambassador, conference organizers and participants, I cordially greet all of those gathered today at the Russian Embassy in London to partake in this conference dedicated to the question of the future of Christianity in Europe. This topic is not only not losing any of its relevance, but is resounding ever anew. Experts believe that today Christianity remains not only the most persecuted religious community on the planet, but is also encountering fresh challenges which touch upon the moral foundations of peoples' lives, their faith and their values. Recent decades have seen a transformation in the religious and ethnic landscape of Europe.


23.09.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at presentation of the book "The Mystery of Repentance" held at the Russian Embassy

I’m glad to welcome you here to a discussion of two prominent hierarchs of the Russian Orthodox Church and the Church of England, on Christian future of Europe.


12.09.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the exhibition opening (“Scythians: Warriors of ancient Siberia” 12 September, British Museum)

Today the British Museum and the State Hermitage of Saint-Petersburg are once again proving their unique world class by bringing a whole new civilization to London. Ancient, and almost mythical, but creative, powerful and very different from what we have all known about antiquity – the Scythians.


14.07.2017 - Letter of Consul General Mr Andrey Pritsepov to the Herald newspaper, published 13.07.2017

I NOTE a rather questionable article by Mark McLaughlin (“Russians lurking near Faslane to eavesdrop on nuclear submarines", The Herald, July 11). Do you really believe that 145 million Russians would elect a leader who would command his nuclear submarines to chase someone's sole and lonely operative U-boat which is firing missiles in the opposite direction or Type 45 destroyers with faulty engines or an aircraft carrier without aircraft on it, all of them being located in Scottish waters?


14.07.2017 - Letter of Consul General Mr Andrey Pritsepov to the Herald newspaper, published 13.07.2017

I NOTE a rather questionable article by Mark McLaughlin (“Russians lurking near Faslane to eavesdrop on nuclear submarines", The Herald, July 11). Do you really believe that 145 million Russians would elect a leader who would command his nuclear submarines to chase someone\'s sole and lonely operative U-boat which is firing missiles in the opposite direction or Type 45 destroyers with faulty engines or an aircraft carrier without aircraft on it, all of them being located in Scottish waters?



all messages