22 October 2021
Moscow: 14:50
London: 12:50

Consular queries:  
+44 (0) 203 668 7474  

1328 days have passed since the Salisbury incident - no credible information or response from the British authorities                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     1320 days have passed since the death of Nikolay Glushkov on British soil - no credible information or response from the British authorities



Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s answers to media questions following a visit to the Kaliningrad Region, Kaliningrad, August 17, 2021

Question: You had a meeting with freight carriers today. What is the status of the Dubki-Rambinas checkpoint, when will it become operational and, in general, what problems did the carriers share with you? How can you help them?

Sergey Lavrov: I discussed the state of affairs with the Governor and the President of the Association of International Road Carriers {ASMAP). Many issues under review were highly specific and purely technical. As we reiterated today, they are being considered by a special government commission chaired by First Deputy Prime Minister Andrey Belousov. The next meeting will be held in September. Today's meeting, which made it possible to sum up all our concerns, was quite timely. In a joint effort with our colleagues from the Kaliningrad Region Government and ASMAP, we will summarise these suggestions for further consideration by this commission.

With regard to the checkpoint on the Lithuanian border, Dubki, which is our part of the international checkpoint, it was renovated and opened for business in December 2020. The Lithuanian side also planned to do its part fairly quickly, but a flood seriously damaged the road. Now, as our Lithuanian colleagues are telling us, they will need more time to finish the repairs and officially complete renovation. Unfortunately, this will take quite a long time, but they assure us that everything will be ready by next summer. We will see.

Question: Can Russia consider the option of recognising the Taliban regime unilaterally?

Sergey Lavrov: We have brought this up more than once. Just like all other countries, we are not in a hurry to recognise them. Just yesterday, I spoke with Foreign Minister of the People's Republic of China Wang Yi. Our positions overlap. We are seeing encouraging signals from the Taliban, who are saying they want to have a government with the participation of other political forces. They said they stand ready to continue the processes, including the ones that involve education, education for girls and the functioning of the state machine in general, without shutting the door to the officials who worked under the previous government led by President Ashraf Ghani. We are observing positive processes on the streets of Kabul, where the situation is fairly calm and the Taliban are effectively enforcing law and order. But it is too early to talk about any unilateral political steps on our part. We support the beginning of an all-encompassing national dialogue with the participation of all Afghan political ethnic and religious forces. Former President Hamid Karzai and Chairman of the High Council for National Reconciliation Abdullah Abdullah have already spoken in favour of this process. They are in Kabul. They came up with this proposal. One of the leaders of northern Afghanistan, Mr Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, has joined this initiative as well. Literally these days, as I understand, maybe even as we speak, a dialogue with a Taliban representative is going on. I hope it will lead to an agreement whereby the Afghans will form inclusive transitional bodies as an important step towards fully normalising the situation in this long-suffering country.

Question (addressed to Anton Alikhanov): Mr Alikhanov, you said ferries were an optional solution to transit. As I understand it, ASMAP representatives said it was a costly option.

Sergey Lavrov (speaking after Anton Alikhanov): We told our Polish neighbours that we could stop using the permit system altogether, but they have not shown interest in that yet.

Question: Clearly, making forecasts amid the pandemic is a thankless job. However, these questions were raised today as well. When will the vaccination certificates be mutually recognised and the borders open and what are the preconditions for doing so?

Sergey Lavrov: We discussed this in depth today during a meeting in Avtotor and a meeting with the governor. The process is underway. It is fairly complicated, because it involves leaving behind the attempts to politicise this procedure, which tend to resurface now and then. This is a fairly technical process, including with regard to protecting personal data or standardising technical approaches to matters associated with presenting mutually recognised certificates. I hope the European Commission will pick up the pace of its work. On our side, the Ministry of Healthcare and the Gamaleya Institute are ready to complete this work in a short time. Also, when a fundamental decision of this kind is made, its implementation will depend on each country in particular. Under the EU rules, it is up to the national governments whether to admit people vaccinated with a vaccine that is not EU-certified. The agreement on mutual recognition of certificates does not mean that Sputnik V or our other vaccines will be certified by the EU. This is an opportunity to travel to other countries. Mutual recognition of certificates will be a major breakthrough for the people whose life plans are disrupted by the lack of it.

Question: Do you think mutual recognition of the certificates is a faster path forward than the recognition of Sputnik V in the West?

Sergey Lavrov: If I understand correctly, yes, it is a faster way to get there. Nobody knows how the recognition of Sputnik V will play out. Even before the Western vaccines were registered for use in Europe, the European Medicines Agency had already signed a bunch of contracts for the supply of these vaccines, which were then unregistered, mind you. With regard to Sputnik V, you may have heard many statements, including by Ursula von der Leyen, to the effect that they do not need Russian vaccines, and they do not need to discuss anything with us. And yet we are being accused of waging a “vaccine war” and provoking anti-vaccination demonstrations in the West. This is sad. Crises of this kind should unite people, which President Putin conveyed a year ago announcing the creation of the Sputnik V vaccine.

Question: Experts have already dubbed current developments in Afghanistan a direct consequence of global changes in international politics, in particular, the United States losing its dominant positions. Is that true? If so, what model is the world following and what role is assigned to Russia?

Sergey Lavrov: We discussed this in depth at our meeting. Of course, the world is changing. The West can no longer address all issues of international life on its own, as it did for 500 years, when it dominated militarily and economically and geographically and culturally, imposing its values on everyone. Other major global players are rising, including China and India, as well as Africa and Latin America, which are becoming increasingly aware of their national civilisational identity. Everything that we are now calling a multipolar world order that was foreseen by Yevgeny Primakov almost 20 years ago in the 1990s, is now taking place in practical terms. It is no coincidence that at a certain point the G20 was created, which includes the G7, as well as BRICS and other countries, whose international philosophy is much closer to BRICS than the G7. By taking this step, the West acknowledged that it could no longer address global economy and international finance challenges alone. The G20 is a capacious, compact and very representative forum to discuss issues, the solution to which depends not only on the West, but many other players. Forming a multipolar world will take time. This may be a short, but nonetheless a historic era. It is a painful process. The West is struggling to relinquish its hegemonic position. The idea that NATO should be used in this process has gained currency. NATO, which was created as a purely defensive alliance, has declared the expansion of its influence, including the barrier infrastructure on a global scale, as its goal. They are now talking about creating something along the lines of an “Indo-Pacific” NATO, as they once spoke of a “Middle Eastern” NATO. It is not that they are a “wounded beast,” but this group of countries finds it hard and painful to part with the positions that they used to enjoy globally for many decades. There are many clear-eyed politicians in Europe. They realise that it is much more effective to focus on a positive agenda than to build up aggressive claims and demand everyone to follow Western advice and lectures. Especially considering that the global development centre has shifted from the Euro-Atlantic region to Eurasia. Our common vast Eurasian continent provides all the countries and organisations located here with clear and obvious comparative advantages in developing new global routes, economic projects and initiatives to pair resources with technology. It is obvious to the point that it is counterproductive to ignore this. It is not accidental that the Eurasian Economic Union, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation and the countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations responded to President Putin’s initiative to form a Great Eurasian Partnership. Moreover, this initiative made it clear that its doors are open to all countries and entities located on the Eurasian continent, including the EU member states. We strive to use this unifying and proactive approach to promote our interests in the international arena. We do not want to isolate ourselves or to fall into confrontation. Certainly, we will firmly respond to any and all attempts to infringe on our legitimate interests. But this is not our choice. We stand for the unifying trends that are required by global growth, which we consider important to encourage and support.




20.10.2021 - Joint Statement of the Participants in the Moscow Format Consultations on Afghanistan, Moscow, 20 October 2021

Joint Statement of the Participants in the Moscow Format Consultations on Afghanistan.

19.10.2021 - Foreign Ministry statement on response measures to NATO decisions regarding the Russian Permanent Mission to NATO in Brussels, October 18, 2021

On October 6, 2021, the NATO Secretariat officially announced NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg’s decision to withdraw the accreditation of eight members of the Russian Permanent Mission to NATO on November 1, 2021, as well as to reduce the overall number of mission personnel to 10. No reason for this decision has been provided.

10.10.2021 - Embassy comment on the article in ‘The Sun’ newspaper

We express our utter indignation at the article in ‘The Sun’ claiming that a ‘Russian spy’ was present at the recent Conservative Party Conference. This low-grade scoop is of no surprise though, as we got used to this kind of disinformation being produced by the British media.

03.10.2021 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks at the 29th Assembly of the Council on Foreign and Defence Policy (CFDP), Moscow, October 2, 2021

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks at the 29th Assembly of the Council on Foreign and Defence Policy, Moscow.

01.10.2021 - Joint Statement on the Outcomes of the U.S. – Russia Strategic Stability Dialogue in Geneva on September 30

Today in Geneva, interagency delegations from the United States and the Russian Federation convened for the second meeting of the bilateral Strategic Stability Dialogue since President Biden and President Putin committed to an integrated, deliberate, and robust process in June. The United States delegation was led by Deputy Secretary of State Wendy R. Sherman, and the Russian delegation was led by Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov. The discussion was intensive and substantive.

29.09.2021 - Foreign Ministry statement on the permanent deletion by YouTube of RT’s German-language projects

YouTube, a video hosting service, has committed an act of unprecedented information aggression against RT media holding’s German-language projects with the obvious tacit consent of Germany, if not at its insistence.

21.09.2021 - Embassy comment on the new ‘development’ in the investigation of the Salisbury incident

It is worth noting that immediately after the incident in Salisbury Russia suggested that a comprehensive and transparent cooperation by law enforcement agencies of the two countries would allow to establish the facts of what had happened. Instead, the UK chose to conduct investigation unilaterally and behind closed doors. Now, we hear once again that yet another Russian national was, as a ‘member of the GRU’, allegedly involved in the attempted murder. Just as was the case with earlier claims made during this investigation, neither the public nor Russia have been provided with concrete evidence. To present the fact of a certain individual entering or leaving the UK on particular dates in March 2018 as a newly obtained information is nothing but laughable.

21.09.2021 - Embassy comment on the British reaction to the Russian State Duma elections

It is symptomatic that our British counterparts plainly ignore the many positive developments in our electoral system. These include online voting used for the first time at the national level, as well as new steps taken to strengthen the system of civic control over elections, including observers at polling stations, live video streaming, speedy publication of results by polling station. Rather than recognising these achievements of the civil society, the UK continues with hollow claims of ‘undermining political plurality’ and ‘holding of elections on Ukraine’s sovereign territory’.

24.08.2021 - Comment by Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova on the meeting of the so-called Crimea Platform in Kiev

We have taken note of an event that was held in Kiev on August 23 and was entitled a “Crimea Platform Summit.” The stated aim of this political project, developed with active involvement of government experts from the United States, the UK and the European Union and funded by the United States Agency for International Development, is “the de-occupation of Crimea and its reintegration with Ukraine.” The participants involved are just right for this goal – mainly being NATO countries and some international organisations sharing a common delusion that the Crimean Peninsula should be part of the current Ukrainian state and that it can be torn away from the Russian Federation by increasing political and economic pressure on Russia.

21.08.2021 - Embassy comment on new sanctions imposed by UK

We took notice of the new personal sanctions imposed by the UK on the Russian nationals for what is claimed to be ‘their direct responsibility for the poisoning of Alexey Navalny’. It is indicative indeed that sanctions are being rubber-stamped in a process which is completely detached from actual facts and looks like a formality, a way to ‘mark anniversaries’.

all messages