14 December 2018
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285 days have passed since the Salisbury incident - no credible information or response from the British authorities                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     277 days have passed since the death of Nikolay Glushkov on British soil - no credible information or response from the British authorities



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.

These journalists describe as “rebels” Hayat Tahrir al-Sham, the group that claimed responsibility for downing on February 3 the Russian Su-25 assault aircraft piloted by Major Roman Filippov. He was monitoring compliance with the ceasefire in the Idlib de-escalation zone.

Hayat Tahrir al-Sham emerged as an offshoot of the terrorist organisation Jabhat al-Nusra in 2017, which took under its operational control a number of other units of the anti-government armed opposition. Jabhat al-Nusra, which severed ties with al-Qaeda at one point, and its spawn Hayat Tahrir al-Sham are blacklisted by the international community as terrorist organisations despite the assurances of al-Nusra leaders that they have split with al-Qaeda. Nobody takes such statements seriously. The attempts of the Western media to disavow Hayat Tahrir al-Sham’s links with al-Qaeda on this basis are unfounded and only designed to mislead the public in the West about the nature of the targets attacked by the Russian Aerospace Forces and the Syrian Army.

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has emphasised many times that terrorists from Jabhat al-Nusra continue to be able to offer resistance because they have external support, including from the media. The elimination of this terrorist group, no matter what name it assumes, is one of the key goals of the Russian Aerospace Forces in Syria.

It is telling that representatives of the White Helmets are quoted in these articles. This organisation has discredited itself to the point that its mere mention as a source gives cause to doubt the authenticity of a story. Social media is littered with videos showing “rescuers” from the White Helmets putting makeup on “victims of the Syrian Government’s brutality” or alleged bombing by the Russian Aerospace Forces. They are closely cooperating with terrorist organisations and are often seen with weapons in hand on the side of terrorists during combat operations. The video showing White Helmets “helping” already dead children caused a stir.

The authors of some articles are making new attempts to hold Russia and the lawful Syrian Government responsible for the use of toxic agents in Idlib. To the contrary, Russia has consistently advocated the complete elimination of chemical arms in Syria. Owing to Moscow’s peacemaking initiative, an agreement was reached on the liquidation of Syria’s chemical arsenal. In the middle of 2014 precursors of chemical arms were removed from Syria with Moscow and Washington’s cooperation.

Moreover, in October 2017 the US Department of State reported the use of toxic agents by Hayat Tahrir al-Sham in Idlib, thereby admitting that terrorists have chemical weapons. Nonetheless, this high-profile statement did not garner the attention of world media.

These bogus stories are being published against the background of Russian diplomatic efforts, including the Syrian National Dialogue Congress held in Sochi on January 29-30. An anti-Russia campaign was also launched by the Western media simultaneously with the successful liberation of Aleppo by the Syrian government troops and the Russian Aerospace Forces, which suggests some parallels.

These attempts of the Western media to discredit Russia’s role in the struggle against terrorists are regrettable. We see them as part of the double game played by some of our Western partners that divide terrorists into good and bad in the pursuit of their myopic geopolitical interests.


The Washington Post, February 5: “Syria’s Idlib province pounded by Russian airstrikes, activists say” (By Erin Cunningham and Louisa Loveluck)



The Guardian, February 6: “Biggest airstrikes in a year hit Syria after rebels shoot down Russian jet.”



Newsweek, February 5: “Russia bombs Syria rebel strongholds after jet is shot down.”



Deutsche Welle , February 5: “Devastating Russian airstrikes of retribution in Syria.” 



Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, February 5: “Russia launches an offensive after the jet is downed.” 



13.12.2018 - Statement of the Russian Federation on the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration, Marrakesh, December 11, 2018

The Russian Federation supports the adoption of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration. This compromise document covers many dimensions of international migration, including humanitarian aspect, development issues, human rights and fight against crime.

12.12.2018 - Embassy comment on the state of the investigation into the death of Nikolay Glushkov

Nine months have passed since former Deputy General Director of Aeroflot Nikolay Glushkov, a national of the Russian Federation, mysteriously died in London.

11.12.2018 - Joint statement by Angola, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bolivia (plurinational state of), Burundi, China, Comoros, Congo, Cuba, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eritrea, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Russian Federation, State of Palestine, Syrian Arab Republic, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), Viet Nam, Zimbabwe at the Fourth review conference of the chemical weapons convention, the Hague, November 30, 2018

We, the States Parties to the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on their Destruction (CWC), committed to achieving the goal of freeing the world of chemical weapons, strongly condemn the use of chemical weapons by anyone, anywhere and under any circumstances.

09.12.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question concerning the accusations of “Russian involvement” in the cases of Scott Young and Alexander Perepilichny

Question: The Sunday Times articles today speculate on the possibility that, despite earlier claims, Mr Scott Young and Mr Alexander Perepilichny were killed, while also hinting at the alleged “Russian link”. How could the Embassy comment on that? Answer: These and similar “sensations” follow the same traditional pattern. As always, no official information is provided, only leaks in the media from unknown sources. Upon this rickety foundation, fancy theories are built, with a remarkably rich collection of modal verbs used. And as always, publications appear on the eve of an important political event, such as Brexit deal vote. It is really hard to avoid the impression that we witness a pre-meditated political game to draw the public attention from the less glamorous sides of UK foreign and internal affairs.

09.12.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question concerning the UK position on chemical weapons attack in Aleppo, Syria

Question: How would you comment on the statement by the UK FCO spokesperson on chemical weapons use in Aleppo? Answer: The statement reflects the worst traditions of the modern UK diplomacy in both form and substance: no attempts are made to present any evidence supporting its allegations, instead phrases of little value, such as “likely”, “highly likely” or “highly unlikely”, are being used excessively.

07.12.2018 - Embassy Comment on the situation with Russian nationals Sergei and Yulia Skripal

More than nine months have passed since the incident with the Russian citizens Sergei and Yulia Skripal. The British authorities have been in breach of their obligations under five basic international conventions as they persistently refuse to work together with the Russian side, fail to use official channels for bilateral exchange of information and make every effort to cover up the circumstances of the incident. The Skripals have not been seen alive for a long time. Their whereabouts and health status are unknown.

06.12.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question concerning recent publications in the British media concerning alleged increase of Russian intelligence activity

Question: How would you comment on British media reports claiming that British security services are currently witnessing intensive activity of Russian intelligence officers allegedly working under diplomatic cover? Answer: Unfortunately, the spy hysteria in the British society is aggravating. The content of such publications, which regularly appear in the British media with the connivance of the authorities, shows that the current Conservative government is increasing its efforts to create a “toxic” image of the Russian Embassy in order to complicate our interaction with the British public as much as possible. Embassy staff travelling across the country is an absolutely normal, lawful and indispensable part of their work and daily life. Yet it is displayed as some kind of intelligence missions. This amounts to an attempt to limit the Embassy’s routine operations to a minimum.

05.12.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question concerning the UK Government’s assessment of Ukraine’s actions

Question: The UK Government openly distorts the circumstances of the incident in the Kerch Strait on 25 November. What do you think is the reason for that? Answer: Unfortunately, the Ukrainian provocation in the Black Sea, as well as the general situation in the region, continues to be used by a number of Western countries, including the UK, to stir anti-Russian rhetoric. The details of the incident, most notably the blatant and deliberate violation of the territorial waters of the Russian Federation by the Ukrainian ships, are ignored by the UK Government. A number of British media outlets have also given a biased assessment of Russian actions in the Kerch Strait.

05.12.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question concerning recent appeals of the British officials to impose new sanctions against Russia

Question: Recently British government officials have been actively urging to step up pressure on Russia by imposing new sanctions. How would you comment on this matter? Answer: We have taken note of such calls. Those statements have clearly shown the anti-Russian essence of the current Conservative government’s policies. The British officials are doing their utmost to avoid conducting a normal intergovernmental dialogue with Russia, while using only the language of ultimatums and sanctions, and are actively urging their partners, first and foremost in Europe, to act in a similar manner.

04.12.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question concerning accusations of “spying” made against Channel One Russia journalists

Question: How would you comment on the publications in British media claiming that “Channel One Russia” journalists were involved in some sort of “spying activity”? Answer: We have taken note of the numerous publications with accusations against “Channel One Russia” journalists of “spying”, as well as of the instruction by the British Ministry of Defence that soldiers should not talk to Russian journalists and report them to the police if they ever see them near military installations. Such ungrounded accusations raise much concern. “Channel One Russia” works in the UK officially and openly, with all the necessary paperwork, in accordance with British law. In fact, this cannot always be said about certain UK journalists working in Russia.

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