18 November 2019
Moscow: 10:24
London: 07:24

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624 days have passed since the Salisbury incident - no credible information or response from the British authorities                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     616 days have passed since the death of Nikolay Glushkov on British soil - no credible information or response from the British authorities

PRESS RELEASES AND NEWS

09.09.2018

Embassy response to Home Secretary Sajid Javid’s remarks at the Andrew Marr Show, 9 September 2018

     Sajid Javid: This [the Salisbury incident] was the act, we now know unequivocally, crystal clear, this was the act of the Russian state.

Comment: If Mr Javid has evidence that allows him to make this kind of direct accusations, why wouldn’t he share it with the public? So far, what the public has seen is nothing but photos of two Eastern-European-looking men walking around Salisbury on two different days. Everything else, including exact dates and names, let alone these gentlemen’s involvement in the Skripals poisoning and their links to the Russian state, is only assertions based on unverifiable “intelligence” and on the “lack of alternative explanations”. If the “crystal clear”-level evidence exists, it is in everyone’s interest for it to be published.

Sajid Javid: Russia is against the International Rules-Based System. The same system by the way that since the end of the Second World War has brought us prosperity and peace, relative peace throughout the world. Russia doesn’t like that system.

Comment: The “international rules-based system” is not what was agreed at the end of the Second World War. It is a recent invention by the West aimed at distorting the real UN-centered international system based on International Law. The notion of a “rules-based system” allows Western countries to pick and choose whatever “rules” suit them (regardless of whether they have been agreed universally, regionally or have only been proposed) and to try to make them pass for something universally recognized.

For its part, Russia has always been, and remains, a staunch supporter of International Law as agreed between all states. We cherish the unique legitimacy of the United Nations, as opposed to the numerous “global alliances” and “groups of friends” created by proponents of the “rules-based system” in order to achieve aims which don’t find enough support at the UN.

The difference between the universally accepted International Law and the “rules-based system” is well known to the people of Iraq, Libya or Syria: where International Law would have protected them from armed aggression, the “rules-based system” has, on the contrary, encouraged foreign intervention under false pretexts and with disastrous consequences. It may have brought “peace and prosperity” to “us”, as Mr Javid puts it, i.e. to the West. But for many, it has only brought war and devastation.

So the Home Secretary is right: Russia does not like the “rules-based system” as long as that “system” aims at arbitrarily dismantling International Law, agreed and developed by all states ever since the Second World War.

Sajid Javid: We have enormous capability to defend ourselves. […] We have considerable powers and we’ll bring all those powers, both covert and overt to bear on Russia and what it represents today.

Comment: Mr Javid knows full well that Russia represents no threat from which Britain needs to be defended. We don’t intend to kill British people, to grab British territories, to harm British infrastructure, to disrupt British trade. It is a pity that more and more members of the UK Government and Parliament are joining the large-scale anti-Russian propaganda campaign which essentially intimidates the British people. This is another Project Fear, aimed at securing popular support for the Conservative Government, budgetary allocations for defence, and UK’s continued standing in NATO and vis-à-vis EU partners, at risk because of Brexit.

At the same time, Mr Javid and the whole Government must realize the unhelpful nature of their provocative rhetoric which may be seen as preparing the public for aggressive actions against Russia under the disguise of “defending ourselves”. It is worth recalling that back in March, we invited the UK Government to confirm that they are not planning cyber attacks against Russia. No such confirmation has been forthcoming.

Sajid Javid: Russia has no extradition treaty with the UK. It has a history of not extraditing its citizens.

Comment: This is a relatively minor point, but one that aptly demonstrates the level of competence of the British government and civil service.

Actually, Russia and the UK do have an extradition treaty. It is called the European Convention on Extradition, 1957. It does not only exist on paper but is a working instrument, with the two countries occasionally extraditing suspects to each other (even if the level of UK’s compliance with Russia’s extradition requests leaves much to be desired).

True, Russia does not extradite its own citizens. That is not because we have “a history” of refusing to do so, but because this is directly prohibited by the Russian Constitution, in the chapter on human rights that cannot be amended except through adoption of a fully new Constitution.

Yet, this does not preclude Russia-UK cooperation on a particular criminal case, even when the suspects are Russian. Alongside the European Convention on Extradition, there exists the European Convention on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters, 1959. Assistance under that Convention might include taking evidence from a witness, servicing a writ etc. We fail to understand why the UK excludes the possibility of seeking Russian cooperation within the framework of that Convention. This would be the natural course of action for a country genuinely interested in a progress of its investigation.

Furthermore, given that competent Russian authorities have opened a criminal case of their own, the existing cooperation framework might lead to suspects being brought to court in Russia. Quite obviously, this is impossible without evidence being transferred from the UK to Russia. Again, the British refusal to explore this avenue only testifies to the lack of evidence capable of standing up to judicial scrutiny.




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Esteemed Mr Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, Thank you very much for receiving me during my visit to Nur-Sultan.


10.10.2019 - Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Vershinin’s interview with Izvestia, October 9, 2019

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26.09.2019 - Embassy Press Officer comments on new data regarding the Salisbury investigation

On 25 September, the Metropolitan Police published new data on blood tests taken in March 2018 from individuals that might have been affected by a nerve agent in Salisbury. The samples did not reveal any traces of exposure. Leaving aside the question of why the tests have been carried out only now, let us point out that the absence of traces of “Novichok” does not help to support the official British version of the incident. But there is another aspect to the news.


25.09.2019 - Joint Statement by the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Russian Federation and the Republic of Turkey on Syria, New York, 24 September 2019

The Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Russian Federation and the Republic of Turkey as guarantors of the Astana format held a trilateral meeting on the margins of the 74th meeting of UN General Assembly. The Ministers: 1. Reaffirmed the strong commitment of the Astana guarantors to the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of the Syrian Arab Republic and emphasized that these principles should be respected by all sides.


23.09.2019 - “World at a Crossroads and a System of International Relations for the Future” by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov for “Russia in Global Affairs” magazine, September 20, 2019

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22.09.2019 - Embassy Press Officer replies to a media question regarding Charlie Rowley’s intention to sue the Russian Government

Question: How would you comment on the plans by Charlie Rowley, a victim of the Amesbury poisonings, to initiate judicial proceedings against the Russian authorities? Answer: As far as we understand, these plans are at a very preliminary stage. A lawsuit specifically against the Russian Government is but one of the options considered by Mr Rowley’s lawyers. For our part, we fully share Charlie’s desire to establish truth regarding his poisoning that also resulted in the death of his partner Dawn Sturgess. Mr Rowley is seeking clarity over the “unanswered questions”, which is, incidentally or not, the title of the Embassy’s own report with questions to the British authorities.



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