President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev: Comrades, veterans,
First of all, I want to congratulate you all on your professional holiday and thank you for your conscientious service, devotion to your duties and for carrying out difficult state missions that often require not just great professionalism but also personal courage.
The tasks before you today have changed in nature of course compared to past tasks. The modern world makes internal and external security interlinked and indivisible, and the threats we face today are complex in nature.
These threats arise from fast-changing circumstances and the constant and rapid development of modern technology and communications, as well as highly complex and sometimes uncontrollable economic and political global processes. This all has an impact on the balance of power and influences economic and social stability in most countries around the world. It affects our stability too, affects the situation within Russia and along its borders.
In these conditions the security services need to take a firmer and more attentive line towards protecting our national interests, gathering information on potential threats from outside, and working closely with each other to analyse these threats and keep a step ahead of developments.
It is also extremely important to ensure that the security services have all the modern equipment they need to meet today’s demands. In tandem with this, the security services officers need to be properly trained and competent in their knowledge and use of the most advanced methods.
Your priority tasks today include counterterrorism, and preventing extremism and xenophobia. We all realise how important this is, and our life today provides us with examples before our very eyes.
It is particularly important to guarantee security in the run-up to and during the big international events that our country will host, such as the APEC summit in Vladivostok in 2012, the World University Games in Kazan in 2013, and of course the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics.
You must be effective in combating organised crime groups. Such groups are very active, unfortunately, and in some cases merge with extremist movements, supplying bandits with money and arms. A key part in this combat is not only personal courage, which the security services officers have in plenty, but also use of modern strategies and tactics for fighting these threats.
We must continue the work to modernise our state border.
Counterintelligence is another of the customary areas in which the national security services are active. This work aims to protect our scientific and intellectual wealth and achievements. Successful work in this area has a direct impact on our country’s competitiveness and on its potential in space, defence, nuclear technology, and all of the modern fields in which our country holds a strong intellectual position.
Of course, making progress on the road towards innovative modernisation also requires us to fight corruption. Our ability to tackle this problem rapidly and effectively is crucial for our country’s welfare and ability to defend its people and guarantee them decent conditions for a normal life.
The security services have considerable powers and material resources at their disposal, and our society must be certain that everyone working in these organisations is acting strictly within the law.
Friends, we celebrated the 65th anniversary of Victory this year. I take this opportunity once more, as this year comes to a close, to speak my words of heartfelt gratitude to all veterans present, to all of you who spent your youth on the fronts of the Great Patriotic War, and who carried out difficult missions abroad and at home during those difficult years, and took part in many unique operations in the post-war period. Your invaluable training and experience needs to be handed down to new generations, and your lives and careers are examples of service for our country to follow.
Once more, I sincerely congratulate both veterans and current security services officers on this professional holiday.
I wish you good health, success and good fortune, and I wish the same to your families too.