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President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr President, colleagues, I am very happy to welcome you in Moscow.
Russia was one of the founders of the Red Cross in the 19th century, in 1863, I believe. All these years we have been cooperating with this respectable organisation, which, I think, has a very important mission in the world.
As far as I understand, you have developed good business ties with our Emergencies Ministry. I am very happy to meet with you and discuss our joint efforts.
Welcome, Mr President.
President of the International Committee of the Red Cross Peter Maurer: Mr President, thank you very much for receiving me and my delegation.
As you mentioned yourself, our mutual relations are more than 150 years old. From the beginning of the foundation of the ICRC, Russia has always been a very valuable partner. We have been side by side when international humanitarian law was developed over the last 150 years and again, to go back to the 19th century, the Petersburg Declaration was one of the important stepping stones in the development of international law.
So, indeed we appreciate a lot the support, the cooperation with Russia, and I think the last couple of years have been an opportunity to further intensify our cooperation in operations world-wide, but also on the European continent.
The last years – 2013, 2014 – have been very difficult years for the ICRC because we saw the numbers and the violent dynamic of conflict increase worldwide. Many conflicts have gone from national to regional conflicts, and this has challenged the organisation to respond adequately to the needs of people.