The President congratulated the officers on their new appointments and outlined the tasks before the Armed Forces’ and special services’ commanding officers today.
* * *
President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Comrade officers,
I welcome you to the Kremlin and congratulate you on your appointment to senior positions and conferment of higher military and special ranks. I hope that your new status and powers will help you to resolve more complex and large-scale tasks and achieve in your respective areas the results the country needs.
It is important to continue – and we will do this – our efforts to bolster the country’s defence capability and modernise and re-equip our armed forces.
The military operation against the terrorists in Syria is convincing evidence of our armed forces’ growing potential. This operation has demonstrated well-coordinated work between the different units, and most importantly, the service personnel’s high combat spirit. Risking their lives, our service personnel are doing all they can to help the Syrian army to fight terrorism in order to save civilian lives.
As you know, on December 5, two doctors at the military hospital, Sergeant Nadezhda Durachenko and Sergeant Galina Mikhailova, were killed at their post, and yesterday, Colonel Ruslan Galitsky died after suffering serious injuries the day before as a result of shelling by terrorists.
Let’s honour their memory with a minute of silence.
(Minute of silence.)
I ask the Defence Ministry to propose all of these colleagues for state decorations and do everything possible to give their families the support they need at this difficult time.
The many generals and admirals here today took part or are taking direct part in the operations in Syria. The commanding officers’ direct responsibility is to take into account in full the experience gained during these operations and use it in your further work to develop the military and supply the Army and Navy with advanced arms and equipment.
It is important to raise the level of training and raise performance quality during training exercises. We will discuss this and other areas of work at the Defence Ministry Board’s annual meeting at the end of December.
Russia’s security and our people’s tranquillity depend on effective work by the entire armed services and law enforcement agencies. I have no doubt that the intelligence service officers and law enforcement personnel are very conscious of this.
The Federal Security Service has been taking a pro-active and decisive approach. It completed with excellent results one of the year’s most important tasks – organising security during the parliamentary election campaign and the election itself.
Over the first 10 months of this year, the Federal Security Service has prevented the execution of more than 30 terrorism-related crimes, including 10 terrorist attacks.
The Foreign Intelligence Service plays an important part in safeguarding Russia’s national interests. I hope that the Service’s new leadership will take full account of the rapid changes in the international situation and focus on reinforcing the Service’s technical and analytical potential.
We established the National Guard in order to improve the country’s military organisation. They are responsible for protecting our constitutional foundations, fighting extremism, maintaining public order and overseeing the circulation of arms. I am sure that the National Guard will be entirely up to these tasks.
Our society also has high expectations of the Interior Ministry’s work. The priorities here include a determined fight against crime and corruption and improved safety on our roads.
The tasks for the Prosecutor General’s Office include ensuring that laws are respected in the social sector. You also need to keep constant watch on matters concerning timely payment of wages and benefits.
The Investigative Committee has an important role to play in the law enforcement system. Its responsibilities include investigating the most dangerous types of crime. I hope that its employees will carry out their work effectively and provide the courts with a thoroughly prepared evidence base in order to hand down objective and fair decisions.
The Federal Guard Service makes a big contribution to ensuring national security, and I am sure that you will continue to work effectively and responsibly.
As always, the Emergency Situations Ministry has performed with excellent results and its employees showed their professionalism and competence this year when fighting wildfires in the Siberian Federal District and ensuring emergency power supply for social infrastructure facilities in Crimea and Sevastopol.
Thanks to their work, humanitarian aid cargoes were delivered to more than 10 countries. Russia’s rescue personnel helped in disaster relief efforts in Portugal, Italy, and other countries, and have provided great aid to civilians in Syria.
For the Federal Penitentiary Service, it is essential to ensure unfailing compliance with requirements concerning detention conditions for sentenced persons. Let us never forget that they are also Russian citizens, whatever their faults. You must also improve security at detention centres and prisons through the use of modern technology.
Comrade officers, let me congratulate you once more on your new appointments and ranks. I am sure that you will live up to our high expectations. I wish you health and success in your work.