Letters of credence were presented by Joanna Rose Mamaka (Republic of Gabon), Dumitru Braghis (Republic of Moldova), Kriangsak Kittichaisaree (Kingdom of Thailand), Toyohisa Kozuki (Japan), Sirilo Alex Dias Mamani (Multinational State of Bolivia), Laurie Stanley Charles Bristow (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland), Pankaj Saran (Republic of India), Bakhrom Ashrafkhanov (Republic of Uzbekistan), Enrique Juan Delgado Jenta (Oriental Republic of Uruguay), Peter Martin Tesch (Australia), Qazi Mohammed Khalilullah (Islamic Republic of Pakistan), Banzragchiin Delgerma (Mongolia), Bolot Otunbayev (Republic of Kyrgyzstan), Mohammed Vahid Supriyadi (Republic of Indonesia), Kwami Christophe Dikenu (Republic of Togo), and Faalawaau Perina Jacqueline Sila-Tualaulelei (Independent State of Samoa).
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Address at the presentation of foreign ambassadors’ letters of credence
President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Ladies and gentlemen,
It is a pleasure to welcome you at the Kremlin today for this presentation of letters of credence. It is our hope and desire that your work in Moscow will help to strengthen relations between Russia and the countries you represent. You can count on the support and understanding of Russia’s leadership, ministries and agencies, and of our business and public circles.
The heads of diplomatic missions usually closely follow current international and regional issues. In this respect, let me note that several major steps have been taken recently to open the way to a peaceful settlement in Syria and to combat the international terrorists there.
Russia’s assistance to Syria’s legitimate government has helped to prevent this country from collapsing as a state, to maintain the government institutions, and to avoid new mass-scale victims among the civilian population.
Russia’s Aerospace Forces provided the support needed for Syria’s army to be able to regain the strategic initiative and liberate a number of towns, including Palmyra. With support from Russia’s aircraft, Syrian troops liberated more than 400 towns and killed thousands of terrorists, among them bandits who had come from Russia and other CIS countries.
Together with the United States of America and other partners, we have launched a political process in which representatives of the Damascus government and the opposition forces are taking part, and have created conditions for getting humanitarian aid to people in need in Syria.
Most importantly, the situation in Syria has reaffirmed that the international community can achieve tangible results if we work together on the basis of international law and recognising the United Nations’ central role.
Ladies and gentlemen,
I have no doubt that your diplomatic missions will be paying great attention to the Russia-ASEAN anniversary summit that will take place in Sochi on May 19–20. We are preparing actively for this big international event, which will give us the opportunity to look back over 20 years of productive cooperation between Russia and the countries of Southeast Asia, and to outline promising new projects.
We also intend discuss the prospects for developing cooperation between the ASEAN countries and the Eurasian Economic Union. I am sure that this summit will help to generally bolster the spirit of trust and cooperation throughout the whole Eurasian area.
Ladies and gentlemen,
Taking part in today’s ceremony are the ambassadors of Indonesia and Thailand, which are both ASEAN member states. We have here today representatives of countries from other parts of Asia, and from Europe, Africa, the Americas, and Australia.
I want to stress the point that we seek to develop our relations with all countries on all continents.
Russia’s relations with Gabon are traditionally friendly and we look to expand our political, trade and economic cooperation. We will continue to provide assistance in training specialists in different areas for your country.
We will continue developing our relations with Moldova on the basis of the agreement on friendship and cooperation, which celebrates its 15th anniversary this year. I am sure that we have all the possibilities we need to more fully disclose the potential for our bilateral cooperation and work together more closely within the Commonwealth of Independent States. Russia will continue to support the efforts to find a settlement to the Trans-Dniester situation, including through the international mediators’ group.
Our diplomatic relations with the Kingdom of Thailand go back nearly 120 years. Our bilateral cooperation is developing well in all areas, including in the economy, energy sector, military and military-technical areas, and in humanitarian and tourist exchanges. We maintain active political contacts at all different levels.
Developing a multifaceted dialogue with Japan is one of our foreign policy priorities. I hope that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s working visit to Sochi on May 6 will help to expand our bilateral ties on the basis of mutual benefit and consideration of each other’s interests.
We are satisfied with our cooperation with Bolivia. Following up on the agreements reached with the President of your country last November, we started implementing major fuel-and-energy and scientific-and-technical projects. We agreed with Mr Morales to step up cooperation between the business communities of both countries in many different areas, including the mining industry.
We believe that, regrettably, the current condition of political dialogue as well as trade and investment cooperation with Great Britain does not meet the strategic interests of both countries. More active bilateral cooperation in the international arena could make a positive contribution to the world community’s efforts to resolve the key issues of our time.
India is our specially privileged strategic partner. Russia and India are intensively developing their cooperation, which is traditionally constructive and mutually beneficial. It rests on the mutual sympathy of our two nations, their identical long-term national goals and development tasks, and close positions on key global and regional issues. During the talks with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi last December, we reached agreement in a wide range of issues. Importantly, both countries are vigorously carrying them out. We are closely cooperating with our Indian partners in the context of India’s BRICS presidency.
We highly value our relations with Uzbekistan that are of a truly allied nature. The forthcoming official visit by President Islam Karimov to Russia in April is bound to facilitate their further development. Naturally, we support Tashkent’s efforts in the context of its presidency at the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation to implement the decisions taken at the SCO summit in Ufa and to expand the organisation.
Uruguay is Russia’s reliable partner in Latin America. We hope to strengthen bilateral cooperation in many areas. We are maintaining an intensive dialogue with representatives of Uruguay at different international venues, primarily the UN, considering its status of a non-permanent UN Security Council member in 2016–2017. We welcome Uruguay’s initiative in developing integration processes in South America and its striving to consolidate ties with Russia in the Eurasian Economic Union-MERCOSUR format.
Our relations with Australia could be more productive and mutually beneficial, primarily in trade and the economy. The business communities of our two countries have a vested interest in this.
We are actively working to strengthen multifaceted relations with the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, including trade and economic cooperation and efforts to combat terrorism and drug trafficking. We are satisfied with our relations at the UN, which are based on our common commitment to international law and similar positions on key issues of the global and regional agendas.
Russia and Mongolia are bound by neighbourly and friendly relations of long standing. The further development of bilateral cooperation will be promoted by the implementation of the mid-term strategic partnership programme adopted last year. We will continue our dialogue with President Elbegdorj at the SCO summit in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, in June. We also plan to hold a trilateral Russia-Mongolia-China meeting.
Kyrgyzstan is our strategic ally and partner in the Eurasian integration project. We regularly meet with President Almazbek Atambayev and maintain a constructive business dialogue with him. We will continue to provide assistance to the socioeconomic development of Kyrgyzstan and its adjustment to the requirements set to members of the Eurasian Economic Union. We will take part in preparing and holding events to mark the 25th anniversary of the Commonwealth of Independent States, to be held in Bishkek in September.
We are interested in further strengthening our political, trade and economic relations with Indonesia, the biggest Muslim country playing a large role on the international stage. We intend to implement joint investment projects in energy, mining and transportation, as well as to strengthen our cooperation in the fight against international terrorism. We are expecting President of Indonesia Joko Widodo to come for a visit in May.
We are ready to expand our traditional relations of friendship with the Republic of Togo. We can cooperate in various spheres such as geological exploration and military technology. We will continue to train personnel for Togo.
There are solid opportunities for developing ties and international cooperation with the Independent State of Samoa and other South Pacific island states. We are willing to strengthen our cooperation, provide assistance and develop relations in areas of mutual interest.
Ladies and gentlemen,
This is only a short review of the multifaceted nature of Russia’s relations with the states you represent. I hope that these relations will develop dynamically and grow with your active assistance in the interests of our peoples and international stability and security.
Again, I wish you success. Thank you for your attention.