21 June 2018
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Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko’s remarks at the Russia Day Reception, 13 June 2018


Ladies and gentlemen, friends,

I am delighted to welcome all of you today on the occasion of Russia’s National Day.

This year has been very important for us. We have had Presidential elections in Russia. A new Government has been formed.

We have identified our new goals – to effectively use the global economy growth factors, to achieve breakthroughs in the economy, social welfare, research and education, to significantly improve the quality of life.

President Putin has plans to speed up Russian economy higher than average world growth and to make it the fifth largest economy in the world.

These are our national priorities.

Some have already been deployed into specific action programmes, national projects and legislative initiatives, others will follow shortly.

Russia enjoys active, independent and global foreign policy based on international law.

My country is an integral element of the global economy. We are taking an active part in integration processes, especially within the Eurasian Union, and have a significant share in the energy, food and other markets worldwide. The guarantee of success is in the ability to deal with differences and in fair competition rather than its restriction.

Russia favours trade freedom, economic integration, and constructive partner-to-partner dialogue and calls on our partners from the United Kingdom and other countries to advance together towards the sustainable development goals and a growth model that would provide the most fitting response to modern challenges.

Russia is a unique country spanning over 11 time zones. But we are proud not only of our size and nature.

Russia has the cheapest broadband internet among developed nations and is actively testing 5G networks across the country.

Since 2011 Russia has been the only country to launch manned space flights.

All the new superheavy chemical elements of the Periodic table for the last 20 years have been synthesized in Russia.

Russia is the world leader in wheat exports.

We have the lowest level of external debt among the G20 countries.

And of course tomorrow is the big day, as the FIFA World Cup kicks off in Russia.

We will receive 600 thousand guests from all over the world. There will be 10 thousand British citizens among them. We are confident it will be a great experience for the players, the fans and the Russian hosts as well.

We are looking into the future with optimism and we want to be friends with all those who want to be our friends.

A few days ago we celebrated Queen’s official birthday and I transmitted the message from my President to the Head of state with his best wishes.

Yesterday President Putin received a warm message of congratulations from the Queen on our national day. Let me propose a toast to the Queen and well-being of the British people.

Ladies and gentlemen,

On this very special day I would like to present a Russian state award, the  Pushkin Medal to a very special person – Princess Catherine Galitzine, whom everybody knows as Katya. She is not just a descendant of one of the most famous Russian noble families and an artist. She established the Prince George Galitzine Memorial Library, which is the only Anglo-Russian Library in St Petersburg, and has run it since 1994. It is a unique collection of books about Russia published abroad and publications by Russian emigrants. The goal of the Library is "to educate, enlighten and inspire", and Katya does that both in Russia and here in Britain. Now Princess Galitzine is planning to donate this priceless collection to the city of Saint Petersburg.

By decree of the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin I have the honour to present Catherine Galitzine with silver Pushkin Medal.

Ladies and gentlemen,

2018 has been declared Year of the Volunteer Russia, it gives me a great pleasure to present letters of recognition to volunteers who are making a distinctive contribution to their local communities:

Mihhail Frolov from Derby, member of the Russian Community Council;

Elena Kosminina – Russian Volunteers’ Bureau, London;

Valdas Adomavicius – Russian Volunteers’ Bureau, London.

One of the main events for the Russian community here, in which these volunteers took an active part, was the Victory Day, that we celebrate together with our British friends – veterans of the Arctic Convoys, representatives of the local councils and the Royal British Legion, as well as family members and those for whom our shared history matters. Russia and Britain did many right things together in the past, and I believe we can do more in the future.

Thank you.



Russian Order of Friendship presented to Declan Donnellan

On 19 June 2018 Ambassador Dr Alexander Yakovenko awarded the British theatre director Declan Donnellan with the Russian Order of Friendship for his contribution to bilateral cultural relations.


Remarks by Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko at the "Growing Up Bilingual: Educational Perspectives" seminar, 14 June 2018

Ladies and gentlemen, In today's diverse and multicultural world the importance of language training has become more and more significant. This has a special importance for children from diasporas, including the Russian speaking diaspora in Britain. While living in the English language environment, even kids from families, where Russian is spoken at home, lose language skills without learning Russian at school. This is why we commend supplementary Russian schools, like Znaniye.


Artem Novichenkov speaks at the Russian Embassy

On 7 June the prominent Russian literature scholar Artem Novichenkov gave a lecture at the Ambassador’s Residence on the topic “Dystopia: challenge of the present or fear for the future”.


Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko meets Professor Anthony Briggs

On 6 June, Russian Language Day, celebrated on the birthday of Alexander Pushkin, Russian Ambassador to the UK Dr Alexander Yakovenko met the distinguished scholar of Russian Professor Anthony Briggs.


Brentwood Imperial Youth Band visits Russian Embassy

On 30 May 2018 the Brentwood Imperial Youth Band gave a performance at the Russian Embassy to mark their upcoming participation in the Kremlin military tattoo "Spasskaya Tower". The musicians played a selection of British and Russian tunes and were greeted by Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko. The event was organized with the help of the Rossotrudnichestvo mission.


Alexander Yakovenko visits Oxford University

On 29 May 2018 Russian Ambassador Dr. Alexander Yakovenko visited Oxford University. The Ambassador saw the collections of Russian art at the Ashmolean Museum and presented a sculpture of William Shakespeare by the Honoured Artist of Russia, member of the Russian Academy of Arts Leonty Usov to the museum.


Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko presents prizes to the winners of the Russia2018Quiz dedicated to the 2018 World Cup

On 25 May 2018 the Russian Ambassador Yakovenko hosted the first 11 winners of the #Russia2018Quiz on Embassy’s Twitter account @RussianEmbassy, dedicated to the FIFA World Cup, to be held in Russia from 14 June to 15 July 2018. Our guests come from various cities of England, Scotland and Germany. The winners received prizes – full set of official World Cup merchandise - from the Ambassador and enjoyed an exclusive tour of the residence.


Victory Day celebrated in Britain

On 9 May 2018 the Victory in the Great Patriotic War was celebrated in London with a traditional wreath laying ceremony at the Soviet War Memorial near the Imperial War Museum. The participants included Russian and British veterans, representatives of the UK authorities, Embassies of Russia and other CIS countries, NGOs, Russian community. The "Immortal Regiment" of descendants of WW2 soldiers marched in London from Trafalgar Square to Parliament Square along the Whitehall. Around 3500 people took part in this remembrance rally. Other events took place in Manchester, Derby, Leeds, Edinburgh, Belfast, Cardiff and other cities.


“Read Russia” stand opens at the London Book Fair

On 10 April Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko jointly with the Deputy Head of the Federal Agency for Press and Mass Communications Mr Vladimir Grigoriev visited the official opening of the Russian national stand “Read Russia” at the 47th International London Book Fair (LBF-2018) at Olympia exhibition centre, London. “Read Russia” project is a traditional participant of London Book Fair. 2018 it presents over 500 book titles mostly by modern authors.


Reception to mark the Russia’s participation in the London Book Fair 2018

On 9 April 2018 the Russian Embassy hosted a reception to mark the London Book Fair 2018. “Read Russia” stand at LBF has already become a tradition. This year it proudly presents more than 500 book titles, mostly by modern authors. At the reception 2018 READ RUSSIA prizes were presented for best translations of Russian works of fiction, classical and contemporary, into English.

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