President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Comrade officers, veterans,
First of all, I would like to cordially congratulate you and all security services’ officers on your professional holiday. It has always been a symbol of deep respect for the people who do a very difficult and important job for our society, those who stand on guard for Russia’s sovereignty and national interests, those who protect our security and the constitutional rights of our citizens and are ready to skilfully carry out their mission regardless of risks.
Russian security agencies have a rich history. I am pleased to see that our distinguished veterans are in the most prestigious seats in this hall. You have always conscientiously and honestly served our Fatherland, set examples of true patriotism and faithful execution of one’s duty, answered the call of your heart and always remembered that we have only one Russia and that it should be taken care of and protected regardless of changing political eras and pages of history.
Today your cause is in strong and reliable hands. The current generation of security agency officers – your students and successors – honourably carry on your traditions of loyal and impeccable service to the people.
Security agencies play an extremely important role in protecting the interests of the state and enhancing the stability of our society. Our citizens expect you to work effectively to neutralise external and internal threats. Terrorism is the most dangerous threat. You know how complex and dangerous this threat is.
Yesterday Russian Ambassador to Turkey Andrei Karlov was brutally murdered. All circumstances of this crime are currently being thoroughly investigated.
Needless to say, this causes in us particular pain, but we know what is happening in other countries. It seems that another crime of this kind was committed in Europe. Many people were killed in Berlin. We express our condolences and wish a speedy recovery to the injured.
We want to reiterate once again what we have already proposed many times and continue to propose – we must join forces in the fight against international terrorism. This is the only way to win.
I would like the special services to take additional measures to ensure security inside and outside Russia, to reinforce the security of Russia’s foreign-based institutions and their employees. Please use your partner channels to step up work with the special services of other countries.
It is important to stay as composed and alert as possible going forward. This applies to the FSB and other special services and departments. Of course, the National Anti-Terrorism Committee should retain its coordinating role as the highest authority.
We must continue to act with skill and precision in all areas of our anti-terrorist activities, including neutralising the militants and their leaders, preventing terrorist crimes and cutting off terrorism financing channels.
We should also focus on fighting extremism. We must act decisively to eradicate propaganda promoting xenophobia and nationalism, including in social media, and prevent young people from being lured into joining radical groups. Such attempts are a real threat to the stability of our multiethnic society.
The timely detection of all types of enemy plots against Russia, no matter where they come from, is critical.
It is also necessary to build on progress made over the past years in countering foreign intelligence services. Let's not forget about this. I’m referring to the services that continue their attempts to gain access to political, military, economic, and scientific information.
You should always stay on top of areas such as combating corruption, fighting economic crime, providing reliable protection of state borders, and ensuring the uninterrupted operation of systems of public administration and communications.
To reiterate, you will need to break new ground and achieve significant results in the areas I just mentioned, and many others.
Friends, today Russia’s security agencies possess the latest operational and technical capabilities, highly skilled staff and, most importantly, they work as a single well-coordinated team, guaranteeing the security of Russia and the safety of our citizens.
I want to thank the Russian special services for their high professional skills, competence, and personal courage.
I am aware of your losses. We shall never forget our comrades who gave their lives for the safety of millions of our fellow citizens.
I wish you and your colleagues every success, happiness and good health. That goes for all of you, your families and friends.
Of course, I also wish you a Happy New Year. Have a good evening.