17 October 2017
Moscow: 12:25
London: 10:25

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

 

PRESS RELEASES AND NEWS

19.04.2017

"Diplomacy of Plants" Article by Consul General Mr Andrey Pritsepov and Regius Keeper of Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh Mr Simon Milne in "the Herald" newspaper, published 12.04.2017

The key commonality between plant science and diplomacy it is the sensitivity towards passing seasons. Both must learn to adapt to withstand good times and bad.

In an unsettled period for world politics and diplomacy some respite is sorely needed. When diplomatic relations are strained, innovative and creative approaches to building bridges between nations is even more in demand.

Plants recognise no boundaries and, as such, botanists are frequently granted leeway in their pursuit of plant science. Against this backdrop the Moscow Main Botanic Garden and the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh (RBGE) have established a new partnership in conservation and public engagement. Included in this is an exchange of native of plants between the two to bring a piece of Russia to Scottish soil and vice versa.

RBGE is passionate about its role in delivering international and national plant science and conservation. Much is still to be learned. Knowledge already acquired is being used extensively by medics and scientists, and now by diplomats. In hospitals our plant dependence is evidenced from knowing cancer patients have been treated with an extract of taxus – the yew tree – while atropine, from deadly nightshade, is administered before operations and a compound from daffodil bulbs is dispensed for Alzheimer’s disease. More routinely, our days are supplemented through direct contact with products from plant species, from cotton sheets to wooden floors, food stuffs and beverages of all kinds.

What we don’t know is which plants are yet to come to our rescue or if they are being destroyed before we learn of their existence. Already two thirds of the most commonly prescribed drugs in the USA are derived from plants and fungi. Yet over one third of the world’s plant species are under threat of extinction. Estimates suggest native forest is being lost at a rate of between 45,000 and 55,000 square miles every year – an area about the size of Greece. If this loss of our natural resources continues new solutions to pressing economic and health problems will vanish.

Botanists and horticulturists from RBGE are working in partnership around the world to better understand and protect our flora and fungi. The future depends on alliances in plant diplomacy, transcending political boundaries in the name of conserving our fragile environment.

The organisation’s newest partnership, with Siberia, is significant. As every Russian knows, this region is a very special place. It is a vast land of untouched wild nature, an essence of everything dear to all Russians, an unforgiving yet a noble land. It is held in the hearts of Russians in the same way the Highlands touch the soul of the Scots.

Russia is the largest country on Earth and has the planet’s biggest expanse of forest. Its three distinct climate regions and diverse landscapes are home to thousands of plant species. Many popular UK garden plants such as Dianthus superbus, Erythronium sibericum  and Rhododendron ledebourii and Pulsatilla turczaninovii originate from Russia.

The recent opening of the new Siberian Section of RBGE’s Rock Garden is noteworthy. It coincides with the signing of a Memorandum of Cooperation between the leading botanical institutes of both countries “to promote cooperation between the two institutions in education and in academic research in plant resources.” Now, specimens collected on fieldwork over the last six years will be on public display. In return, plants native to Scotland will be displayed in Moscow in a celebration of research without borders. Working to advance plant research, combat the loss of biodiversity and inspire the public.

RBGE is a global scientific asset, a national treasure and community resource of infinite worth. The Consulate General of the Russian Federation in Edinburgh is keen to contribute  by means of diplomacy and botany. Both parties consider it a significant honour and privilege to work together in enhancing such collaboration. In so doing, a lasting legacy of historic and cultural ties is created.

The Siberian Section of the Edinburgh Garden is a Gateway to Russia using the universal language of nature to communicate and foster cooperation through which a synergy can be created to yield the best harvest.

We are confident the Siberian Section and the upcoming Scottish Section of the Moscow Main Botanic Gardens will be a symbol of mutual understanding and friendship and serve as a timely reminder that the things we have in common outnumber our differences.

 

Andrey A.Pritsepov is Consul General of the Russian Federation in Edinburgh

Simon Milne MBE is Regius Keeper, the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh

 

 

http://www.heraldscotland.com/opinion/15218398.How_plants_can_play_a_vital_role_in_building_bridges_between_nations/




LATEST EVENTS

16.10.2017 - First Deputy Foreign Minister Vladimir Titov’s answer to a media question regarding British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson’s visit to Russia

Question: The Foreign Office announced yesterday that Secretary of State for Foreign & Commonwealth Affairs Boris Johnson would visit Russia. Do you have any comments to make on this?


11.10.2017 - Press release on Deputy Foreign Minister Igor Morgulov’s meeting with Deputy Foreign Minister of Afghanistan Hekmat Khalil Karzai

On October 10, Deputy Foreign Minister Igor Morgulov met with visiting Deputy Foreign Minister of Afghanistan Hekmat Khalil Karzai, who arrived in Moscow to attend the SCO-Afghanistan Contact Group meeting.


11.10.2017 - Foreign Ministry statement on the situation in the Autonomous Community of Catalonia, Spain

Guided by the fundamental principles of international law, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation views the developments in Catalonia as the internal affair of Spain.


10.10.2017 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s opening remarks at the expanded meeting of the CIS Foreign Ministers Council, Sochi, October 10, 2017

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s opening remarks at the expanded meeting of the CIS Foreign Ministers Council, Sochi, October 10, 2017


10.10.2017 - Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s telephone conversation with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson

On October 9, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov spoke by phone with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson at the latter’s initiative.


09.10.2017 - Russian Energy Week Forum plenary session

President Putin attended a plenary session of the first Russian Energy Week (REW) Energy Efficiency and Energy Development International Forum.


09.10.2017 - Comment by the Information and Press department on the upcoming meeting of the CIS Council of Foreign Ministers

On October 10, a regular meeting of the CIS Council of Foreign Ministers will be held in Sochi within the framework of Russia’s CIS Chairmanship in 2017. The agenda is comprised of 18 topics covering a broad range of issues related to CIS cooperation. The CIS foreign ministers will discuss practical measures for promoting multilateral cooperation between the CIS countries and will exchange opinions on current international issues. The documents they will adopt following this meeting will be forwarded to the CIS Council of Heads of State.


06.10.2017 - Embassy Press Officer on the adoption of the Ukrainian law “On education”

On 25 September the President of Ukraine signed the discriminatory law “On education” that violates human rights and infringes the rights of hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian citizens belonging to national minorities.


06.10.2017 - Interview of Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov with the Asharq Al-Awsat Pan-Arab Newspaper, October 2017

Question: Regarding the visit of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques to Russia, how do you assess the Russian-Saudi relations at the bilateral level and in terms of discussion over the region’s crises? Answer: We share the opinion that there is a need for further progressive development of multidimensional Saudi-Russian relations, including for the purpose of ensuring regional and global stability. Saudi Arabia and Russia maintain a confidential political dialogue, inter alia, at the highest and high levels. In early September, I paid a working visit to the Kingdom, during which I had an audience with King Salman and held talks with Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir. I am satisfied with the results.


05.10.2017 - Briefing by Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova, Moscow, October 4, 2017

It has to be stressed that this year the Ministry hired the largest number of university graduates in the last five years. All in all, 115 graduates have been hired this year.



all messages