24 February 2018
Moscow: 05:27
London: 02:27

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PRESS RELEASES AND NEWS

10.07.2017

Comment by the Information and Press Department on reasons for suspending the payment of Russia’s contribution to the Council of Europe

In light of foreign and Russian media comments on the June 30 Statement by the Foreign Ministry Concerning the Suspension of Payment of Russia’s Contribution to the Council of Europe for 2017, we have decided to publish an explanation.

The Russian delegation at the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) has been deprived of a substantial part of their credentials by PACE decisions of April 10, 2014 and January 28, 2015 as “punishment” for recognising the results of the referendum on Crimea’s reunification with Russia.
The following rights of the Russian delegation have been suspended: the voting rights; the right to be represented in the assembly’s leading bodies (the Bureau, the Presidential Committee and the Standing Committee), the right to be appointed rapporteur; the right to be member of an ad hoc committee on observation of elections; the right to represent the Assembly in Council of Europe bodies as well as external institutions and organisations, both institutionally and on an occasional basis.
There is no sense in any delegation working at PACE without these credentials. Therefore, there is no substance to the statements to the effect that the Russian delegation has voluntarily walked out of the assembly.
However, the Russian Federation continues its meaningful work in the Council of Europe including implementation of its obligations under the conventions to which it is a party, as the June 30 Statement says.
The federal executive agencies of the Russian Federation are working towards accession to a number of other Council of Europe conventions, in the continuing bid to try to develop a common European legal space from the Atlantic to the Pacific based on the Council of Europe legislation as one of the foundations for equal and mutually beneficial cooperation between European countries.
This is why Russia is concerned about the increasingly frequent use of the language of hate and hostility and the flagrant disregard for the rule of law and democracy at PACE.
Something must be done to prevent a situation where the governments of the council member states that faithfully comply with the assembly’s decision become hostage to false stereotypes and goals that lead to confrontation. We firmly believe that the assembly as the consultative body of the Council of Europe does not have the right or mandate for this.
In our opinion, the crisis within PACE could be overcome by amending its Rules of Procedure as soon as possible with a provision under which the elected deputies’ credentials can be only suspended by their electorate at the next elections.
The decision to suspend the payment of Russia’s contribution to the Council of Europe for 2017 is evidence of our deep concern over the possible growth of crisis within the council because of the confrontational policies of some PACE members.
Russia is urging all responsible members of governments and parliaments, the political parties and civil societies of the Council of Europe’s member states to prevent the spread of this crisis from PACE to the other council bodies.
The Russian Federation wants the Council of Europe to be strong and effective and believes that the other council members want the same.




LATEST EVENTS

23.02.2018 - Four years since the coup in Kiev: Embassy Press Officer on the article by Boris Johnson on Crimea

Yesterday, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson published an article entitled “Four years since the illegal annexation of Crimea”. It is a pity that it is not accompanied by a piece on the fourth anniversary of the coup d’état in Kiev that was backed by the UK and the West in general, and blatantly violated not only Ukraine’s Constitution, but also the agreement between President Yanukovych and the opposition mediated by Germany, France and Poland on 21 February 2014. It was precisely the forcible removal of the lawfully elected President that paved the way to power to the self-styled “government of winners”, a bizarre mix of pro-European liberals and far-right extremists, and triggered the sequence of events that resulted in Crimea re-joining Russia.


23.02.2018 - Embassy’s comment on the situation in Eastern Ghouta

Several thousand fighters are remaining in Eastern Ghouta, including those associated with terrorist organizations, primarily Jabhat al-Nusra. They are shooting at Damascus, and the intensity of those attacks is increasing every day. The population in Eastern Ghouta has been held as hostages, they are not allowed to leave the territory controlled by the terrorists. Military installations are disguised as medical facilities.


22.02.2018 - Agricultural Attache Derbenskiy took part in the Conference of the National Farmers’ Union (NFU)

On 20-21 February Vladimir Derbenskiy, Agricultural Attache of the Russian Embassy, took part in the annual NFU Conference in Birmingham on the invitation of the Union.


22.02.2018 - Embassy’s Press Officer on the situation in Eastern Ghouta

Q: Could you comment on the statement regarding the humanitarian situation in Eastern Ghouta made by Prime Minister Theresa May in the House of Commons on 21 February? A: The best way to improve the humanitarian situation in Eastern Ghouta is for Jabhat al-Nusra fighters to withdraw. Instead, this terrorist group that controls the area constantly attacks residential areas and diplomatic facilities in Damascus, keeps civilians as hostages and uses them as a human shield. Information on civilian casualties mostly comes from Nusra-affiliated structures, which cannot be seen as impartial. Several medical evacuations have been arranged but met with refusal by the terrorists, who are preventing any attempts to negotiate a larger-scale civilian evacuation.


21.02.2018 - MFA comment on the accusations by UK against Russia of staging massive cyber attacks against Ukraine’s cyber infrastructure

A new era of information warfare against Russia is upon us. It is now alleged that Russia had something to do with the June 2017 cyber attack against Ukraine. The UK Foreign Office and Ministry of Defence have now joined the Western media in spreading these accusations. This time, however, instead of laying the blame on the anonymous and now legendary “Russian hackers,” they went as far as to accuse the Russian government. In keeping with the tradition adopted by the West in general, London failed to provide any specific facts, preferring to make groundless and exasperating statements and allusions and pretending that everything is clear even without coming up with any evidence.


20.02.2018 - DRAFT UNITED NATIONS CONVENTION ON COOPERATION IN COMBATING INFORMATION CRIMES



15.02.2018 - Embassy Comments on statement of Foreign Office Minister Lord Ahmad

The statement of Foreign Office Minister Lord Ahmad regarding Russia’s alleged responsibility for the NotPetya cyber-attack is, like many other similar accusations, not backed by any evidence. It is another example of irresponsible and hostile rhetoric of British officials towards Russia. The Embassy considers it as a part of the continuing campaign aimed at the stigmatisation of our country, that we have witnessed in the UK over the recent months.


15.02.2018 - The latest anti-Russian campaign in Western media (MFA comment)

We have noted a number of articles published by Western media in the latest campaign to denigrate Russia’s role in fighting terrorism in Syria. Here are just a few of the many examples: “Syria’s Idlib province pounded by Russian airstrikes, activists say” (The Washington Post, February 5); “Russia bombs Syria rebel strongholds after jet is shot down” (Newsweek, February 5); “Biggest airstrikes in a year hit Syria after rebels shoot down Russian jet” (The Guardian, February 6); “Devastating Russian airstrikes of retribution in Syria” (Deutsche Welle, February 5); “Russia launches an offensive after the jet is downed” (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, February 5). These articles are obviously carbon-copies – their style and reasoning are strikingly similar. The misinformation comes down to allegations that the Russian Aerospace Forces are striking rebel strongholds in Idlib, killing civilians and damaging civilian infrastructure, including medical institutions. The Syrian Army is being groundlessly accused of using chemical weapons.


14.02.2018 - Embassy’s Press Officer on the chemical incidents in Syria

Q: Could you comment on the recent statements by a number of Western politicians and media claiming that Moscow and Damascus were responsible for the chemical weapons attacks in the course of the Syrian conflict? A: Russia is against any use of chemical weapons and is a strong supporter of chemical disarmament. In Syria we are in favour of conducting professional on-site investigations of all chemical incidents, something that has never been performed. Instead, the OPCW-UN Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM) relied on “evidence” provided by the self-styled activists and rescue organisations such as the White Helmets which are in fact colluding with al-Nusra and other terrorist groups.


12.02.2018 - Ushakov Medal presented to the Arctic Convoys Veterans

On 9-11 February 2018 Third Secretary of the Embassy Vadim Retyunskiy presented the Ushakov medals to the Arctic Convoys veterans Mr David SIMPSON and Mr George MOON



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