Category: Foreign Policy

Donbass special status remains pivotal condition for conflict settlement — Russia’s envoy

Donbass special status remains pivotal condition for conflict settlement — Russia’s envoy

MINSK, September 19. /TASS/. Boris Gryzlov, Russia’s Plenipotentiary Representative to the Contact Group seeking a peace solution to the conflict in eastern Ukraine, noted some positive moments in the region, but pointed out that implementation of the political provisions of the Minsk peace accords – the Donbass special status law and amnesty – remain key factors behind a solution to the conflict. “The Contact Group heard a report of Ambassador Toni Frisch, the Coordinator of the Working Group, about his trip to the LPR [the self-proclaimed Lugansk People’s Republic],” Gryzlov said. “On the whole, he gave a positive assessment to the conditions for detained persons…

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Kremlin says Putin, Merkel discuss Syrian settlement

Kremlin says Putin, Merkel discuss Syrian settlement

© Marina Lystseva/TASS MOSCOW, September 19. /TASS/. Russian President Valdimir Putin held a telephone conversation with German Chancellor Angela Merkel discussing among other issues the settlement of the ongoing Syrian conflict, the Kremlin press service announced on Wednesday. “The issue of the Syrian issue settlement was discussed,” the press service said in a statement. “The Russian president informed [German Chancellor Merkel] about the Russian-Turkish agreements on the stabilization efforts in the de-escalation zone in Idlib reached during talks with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on September 17 in Sochi.” September 17 talks between Putin and Erdogan, in Russia’s Sochi resulted in an agreement to establish a…

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Federation Council speaker to hold talks with PACE head

Federation Council speaker to hold talks with PACE head

President of PACE Liliane Maury-Pasquier © wikimedia.org/Mariep ST. PETERSBURG, September 19. /TASS/. Federation Council Speaker Valentina Matviyenko will hold comprehensive negotiations with Liliane Maury-Pasquier, President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE). The meeting will be held during the second Eurasian Women’s Forum that is taking place in St. Petersburg these days. “We’ll have full-fledged negotiations with her [Pasquier.] It [will] not be on the run, as we’ve got things to discuss. We’re very glad that Ms. Pasquier is interested in this dialogue,” Matviyenko told reporters on Wednesday. She noted that Pasquier understands the importance of the work of all the 47 states…

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Collected Department Releases: St. Kitts and Nevis Independence Day

Collected Department Releases: St. Kitts and Nevis Independence Day

Press Statement Michael R. Pompeo Secretary of State Washington, DC September 18, 2018 On behalf of the Government of the United States, congratulations to the people of St. Kitts and Nevis on your 35th anniversary of independence on September 19. The United States shares a proud heritage with your country. The first U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton was born in Nevis and was a key contributor to establishing our financial system. St. Kitts and Nevis continues to be a valued partner in our mutual efforts to cultivate a more prosperous Caribbean and Western Hemisphere. We thank the people of St. Kitts and Nevis…

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Collected Department Releases: Downed Russian Aircraft

Collected Department Releases: Downed Russian Aircraft

Press Statement Michael R. Pompeo Secretary of State Washington, DC September 18, 2018 The United States expresses sorrow for the death of the aircrew members of the Russian plane that was downed by Syrian regime anti-aircraft fire. Yesterday’s unfortunate incident reminds us of the need to find permanent, peaceful, and political resolutions to the many overlapping conflicts in the region and the danger of tragic miscalculation in Syria’s crowded theater of operations. It underlines the urgent need to resolve the Syrian conflict in accordance with UNSC Resolution 2254 and to end Iran’s provocative transit of dangerous weapon systems through Syria, which are a threat to…

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Russian Foreign Ministry summons Dutch ambassador

Russian Foreign Ministry summons Dutch ambassador

Renee Jones-Bos © REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov, archive MOSCOW, September 18. /TASS/. Ambassador of the Netherlands to Russia, Renee Jones-Bos was summoned to the Russian Foreign Ministry on Tuesday over the continuing anti-Russian campaign in her country, which manifests itself in the fanning of spy fever, the ministry said in a report. “On September 18, the Foreign Ministry summoned the Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Ms. Jones-Bos, in connection with the continued campaign of fanning the spy fever,” it said. The Foreign Ministry called the attention of the Dutch side to the inadmissibility of mass media instigations, including the ones that have a bearing on the…

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White Helmets continue conjuring up provocations with chemical weapons in Idlib — diplomat

White Helmets continue conjuring up provocations with chemical weapons in Idlib — diplomat

UNITED NATIONS, September 18. /TASS/. Militants entrenches in Syria and activists of the White Helmets grouping continue conjuring up a provocation in the Idlib zone of de-escalation, the Russian Ambassador to the UN, Vasily Nebenzya said on Tuesday at a meeting of the UN Security Council that discussed the situation in Syria. “Militants and activists of the White Helmets continue preparing sham scenes that will feature the alleged use of chemical weapons inside the Idlib zone of de-escalation,” he said. In other media

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Russian Foreign Ministry summons Swiss ambassador

Russian Foreign Ministry summons Swiss ambassador

Yves Rossier © Anna Isakova/Russian State Duma Photo Service/TASS MOSCOW, September 18. /TASS/. Switzerland’s Ambassador to Moscow Yves Rossier was summoned to the Russian foreign ministry on Tuesday to give explanations following ungrounded allegations about increased activities of Russian intelligence services in that country. “Swiss Ambassador to Moscow Yves Rossier was summoned to the Russian foreign ministry on September 18,” the ministry said in a press statement. “We demanded he give explanations about ungrounded accusations coming from Switzerland that our country is expanding the activities of special services in Switzerland and that alleged Russian agents are engaging in illegal activities aimed against Switzerland’s vital infrastructure,” the…

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Putin stresses Israeli air forces’ operations violate Syria’s sovereignty

Putin stresses Israeli air forces’ operations violate Syria’s sovereignty

MOSCOW, September 18. /TASS/. The Israeli air forces’ operations in Syria are conducted in violation of that country’s sovereignty, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday during a telephone conversation with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu following Monday’s incident with a Russian plane that was downed in Syria, killing 15 servicemen. “Putin pointed to the fact that such operation of the Israeli air forces are conducted in violation of Syria’s sovereignty. In this case, the Russian-Israeli agreements on incident prevention were not observed either. As a result, the Russian plane came under fire from Syrian air defense systems,” the Kremlin press service said. According to the…

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Putin to hold telephone conversation with Netanyahu — Kremlin

Putin to hold telephone conversation with Netanyahu — Kremlin

© Alexei Druzhinin/Russian Presidential Press and Information Office/TASS MOSCOW, September 18. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin will hold a telephone conversation with Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu later on Tuesday, Putin’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov said. “(The conversation is planned) later in the day,” he answered a TASS question. The Russian defense ministry said earlier that a Russian Ilyushin Il-20 plane that was flying back to the airbase at Syria’s Hmeymim crashed over the Mediterranean Sea late on Monday. According to the ministry, four Israeli F-16 fighter jet were delivering airstrikes on Syrian targets in the Latakia governorate at the moment. The ministry said the Russian…

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Russia says Caspian convention won’t hinder US cargo transit to Afghanistan

Russia says Caspian convention won’t hinder US cargo transit to Afghanistan

Caspian sea © Alexander Ryumin/TASS ASTRAKHAN, September 18. /TASS/. The Convention on the legal status of the Caspian Sea will not hinder the transit of non-lethal goods to US troops in Afghanistan from Azerbaijan via the Caspian Sea, the Russian Foreign Ministry’s Ambassador-at-Large Igor Bratchikov told TASS on Tuesday. “Have a look at the Convention. It bans foreign military presence in the Caspian Sea area and I think the existing restrictions are clarified,” the diplomat said when asked whether the document would limit the transit of non-lethal goods to US troops deployed to Afghanistan. “Both Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan have been ensuring that no third countries have…

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Collected Department Releases: On Constitution Day

Collected Department Releases: On Constitution Day

Press Statement Heather Nauert Department Spokesperson Washington, DC September 17, 2018 Today we mark an event that forever altered the course of world history. On this day 231 years ago, the United States Constitution was signed in Philadelphia by the delegates to the Constitutional Convention, setting in motion the American experiment in limited government and personal liberty. In the years since, the Constitution has guaranteed the personal liberties of every American and served an exemplary statement of freedom for the rest of the world. It has inspired other nations to move toward liberty and has served as a beacon to many afflicted and oppressed peoples.…

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Collected Department Releases: Secretary Pompeo’s Meeting With Moroccan Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita

Collected Department Releases: Secretary Pompeo’s Meeting With Moroccan Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita

Readout Office of the Spokesperson Washington, DC September 17, 2018 The below is attributable to Spokesperson Heather Nauert: Secretary Michael R. Pompeo met today with Moroccan Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Nasser Bourita. They discussed opportunities to expand our strong economic and security cooperation, including shared efforts to end Iran’s support for terrorism and counter its malign influence in the region. Secretary Pompeo and Foreign Minister Bourita agreed to hold the next session of the U.S.-Morocco Strategic Dialogue in Washington next year. They also discussed other regional and international issues. The Office of Website Management, Bureau of Public Affairs, manages this site as…

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Putin and Hungarian PM Orban to discuss gas supplies at talks in Moscow on Tuesday

Putin and Hungarian PM Orban to discuss gas supplies at talks in Moscow on Tuesday

MOSCOW, September 18. /TASS/. Russia’s President Vladimir Putin is to meet with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban on Tuesday. Orban will be in Moscow on a working visit. According to the Kremlin’s press service, the two leaders will discuss “key aspects of further development of the Russian-Hungarian cooperation, as well as relevant international issues.” Also, as Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said, they will discuss issues related to energy sector and gas supplies. He noted that the bilateral agreement on gas supplies expires at the end of 2019 and Hungary is interested to agree with Gazprom on the terms of the 2020 agreement in the…

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Invitation to US to Moscow conference on Afghanistan is still in force – Russia’s UN envoy

Invitation to US to Moscow conference on Afghanistan is still in force – Russia’s UN envoy

UNITED NATIONS, September 18. /TASS/. Russia hopes the United States will take part in the next conference on Afghanistan in Moscow and the invitation is still in force, Russia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Vasily Nebenzya said on Monday. “An optimal venue is needed for international support to the launch of peace process in Afghanistan,” he said at a UN Security Council meeting on the situation in Afghanistan. “The Moscow format of consultations on Afghanistan meets this goal. We plan to organize a meeting in this format with the participation of representatives of the Taliban movement (a terrorist organization outlawed in Russia) after a…

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Russian envoy slams US policy towards North Korea

Russian envoy slams US policy towards North Korea

UNITED NATIONS, September 17. /TASS/. US is putting spoke in the wheel of the inter-Korean dialogue, as it blocks the implementation of infrastructure projects on the Korean Peninsula, the Russian Ambassador to the UN, Vasily Nebenzya, said on Monday as he addressed a meeting of the Security Council on sanctions against Pyongyang. “The so-called UN command that shelters itself behind the name of the organization – and please don’t be deceived by its title, because it’s actually a US-monitored military entity in the Korean demilitarized zone – has blocked the practical steps on the inter-Korean initiative to restart rail service operations,” Nebenzya said. He recalled…

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Kremlin spokesman says Putin, Erdogan did not discuss Ukrainian Church split

Kremlin spokesman says Putin, Erdogan did not discuss Ukrainian Church split

SOCHI, September 17. /TASS/. Presidents Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan did not discuss at their talks on Monday the issues related to the Constantinople Patriarchate’s decision on the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, Kremlin Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov told reporters. “No, this issue didn’t come under discussion,” he said. In other media

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Russia, Turkey agree to establish demilitarized zone in Syria’s Idlib — Putin

Russia, Turkey agree to establish demilitarized zone in Syria’s Idlib — Putin

SOCHI, September 17. /TASS/. Russia and Turkey have agreed to set up a 15-20km demilitarized zone along the contact line between Syrian government troops and the armed opposition by October 15, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Monday after talks with his visiting Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan. “At the meeting, we discussed in detail this situation (in the Idlib governorate) and decided to establish a 15-20km-wide demilitarized zone along the contact line between government troops and the armed opposition by October 15, 2018 and evacuate radical militants, including Jabhat al-Nusra (a terrorist organization outlawed in Russia – TASS),” he said. Putin also told about…

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Ukraine’s leader expects to get re-elected by riding ‘wave of Russophobia’, says senator

Ukraine’s leader expects to get re-elected by riding ‘wave of Russophobia’, says senator

Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko © Mikhail Palinchak/Press Office of the President of Ukraine/TASS MOSCOW, September 17. /TASS/. Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko is hoping to get re-elected “on a wave of Russophobia” by breaking the friendship treaty with Russia, First Deputy Chairman of the Defense and Security Committee of Russia’s Federation Council (upper house of parliament) Frants Klintsevich told journalists on Monday. According to the senator, by breaking the treaty, the Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko “is fulfilling a direct order of certain Western circles.” Besides, he “is working for himself, hoping to become president again on a wave of Russophobia.” Senator also noted that the termination of…

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Putin plans to discuss Syrian settlement with Erdogan

Putin plans to discuss Syrian settlement with Erdogan

© Alexei Nikolsky/Russian Presidential Press and Information Office/TASS SOCHI, September 17. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Monday opening talks with his visiting Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, that he wants to discuss problems of the Syrian settlement and try to find solutions to them. “Our relations are developing dynamically and positively. It can be said about our trade and economic ties, which are growing rapidly. It can be said about our security cooperation, especially within the region, on the international arena in a broad sense of the word,” he said. “There are a lot of problems, some of them being very difficult. I am…

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Thailand interested in developing cooperation with Russia — ambassador

Thailand interested in developing cooperation with Russia — ambassador

Bangkok, Thailand © AP Photo/Sakchai Lalit BANGKOK, September 17. /TASS/. Thailand is interested in developing military and technical cooperation with Russia, Russian Ambassador to Thailand Kirill Barsky said in an interview with TASS. “Military and technical cooperation is a normal business with inevitable competition, which, I hope, will be of a healthy nature on the local market,” he stressed. “We understand the kingdom’s aspiration as a state that imports armaments and military equipment to diversify its ties to foreign counterparties, including the Russian Federation.” “Russia and Thailand have never been close partners in the sphere of military and technical cooperation, however, currently, there are favorable conditions…

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Collected Department Releases: El Salvador’s Independence Day

Collected Department Releases: El Salvador’s Independence Day

Press Statement Michael R. Pompeo Secretary of State Washington, DC September 14, 2018 On behalf of the Government of the United States, I extend congratulations to the people of El Salvador on the occasion of your 197th anniversary of independence September 15. The people of the United States and El Salvador share a strong commitment to democracy, rule of law, and inclusive economic development. Our joint efforts to improve security have delivered results that serve as a model for other nations. We hope to find common ground in El Salvador’s endeavors to expand economic opportunity, strengthen democratic institutions, and continue progress in making your nation…

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Collected Department Releases: Guatemala’s Independence Day

Collected Department Releases: Guatemala’s Independence Day

Press Statement Michael R. Pompeo Secretary of State Washington, DC September 14, 2018 On behalf of the Government of the United States, I congratulate the people of Guatemala on your celebration of 197 years of independence on September 15. The United States remains committed to working together with the Guatemalan people to increase prosperity and improve security and governance in Guatemala. That partnership includes critical efforts to fight corruption and impunity and strengthen the rule of law for the benefit of all Guatemalans. During his visit in June of this year, Vice President Pence reaffirmed to the people of Guatemala that the United States “will…

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Putin, Erdogan to discuss bilateral cooperation and Syria on September 17 – Kremlin

Putin, Erdogan to discuss bilateral cooperation and Syria on September 17 – Kremlin

MOSCOW, September 16. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin will hold a meeting with President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Sochi on September 17, according to the Kremlin press service. According to the press service, the leaders will discuss topical issues of bilateral cooperation and the problems of settlement in Syrian. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Friday at a plenary session of the German-Russian Forum that Putin and Erdogan will discuss the situation in Idlib at a meeting on September 17 in Sochi. “On September 17 there will be a new meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan. They…

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Collected Department Releases: International Day of Democracy

Collected Department Releases: International Day of Democracy

Press Statement Heather Nauert Department Spokesperson Washington, DC September 15, 2018 On this International Day of Democracy, the United States reaffirms its unwavering belief in democracy as the form of government with the greatest capacity to advance peace, prosperity, and security, and to safeguard the universal human rights, fundamental freedoms, and dignity of every person. Enshrined in our own Constitution are bedrock principles essential to the success of any democracy, including freedom of expression, the right to peaceful assembly, respect for the rule of law, and a commitment to the peaceful transfer of political power through free and fair elections. Democratic ideals are at the…

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Collected Department Releases: Ambassador Sales Signs MOU To Strengthen Counterterrorism Cooperation With Indonesia

Collected Department Releases: Ambassador Sales Signs MOU To Strengthen Counterterrorism Cooperation With Indonesia

Media Note Office of the Spokesperson Washington, DC September 14, 2018 Ambassador Nathan A. Sales, the U.S. Coordinator for Counterterrorism, and Commissioner General Suhardi Alius, Chief of the Indonesian National Counterterrorism Agency, signed a Memorandum of Understanding between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of the Republic of Indonesia on Strengthening Counterterrorism Cooperation. The MOU was signed on September 14 in Jakarta. It enhances U.S.-Indonesia cooperation on counterterrorism by improving the exchange of information and best practices, and by building capacity through collaborative training and education. The Office of Website Management, Bureau of Public Affairs, manages this site as a…

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Raqqa residents live in dire conditions — reconciliation center

Raqqa residents live in dire conditions — reconciliation center

MOSCOW, September 15. /TASS/. Civilians in the Syrian city of Raqqa controlled by the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces are in a dire humanitarian situation and have no safe drinking water, so cases of cholera have already been registered, Lieutenant General Vladimir Savchenko, the chief of the Russian center for reconciliation of conflicting sides in Syria, said on Saturday. “The Center for Reconciliation of Conflicting Sides continues receiving reports about a difficult humanitarian situation in the city of Raqqa. Local residents, who have been forcibly returned from the camps for temporarily displaced persons, have no access to pure drinking water and suffer deeply from the shortage…

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Raqqa residents live in dire conditions – reconciliation center

Raqqa residents live in dire conditions – reconciliation center

MOSCOW, September 15. /TASS/. Civilians in the Syrian city of Raqqa controlled by the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces are in a dire humanitarian situation and have no safe drinking water, so cases of cholera have already been registered, Lieutenant General Vladimir Savchenko, the chief of the Russian center for reconciliation of conflicting sides in Syria, said on Saturday. “The Center for Reconciliation of Conflicting Sides continues receiving reports about a difficult humanitarian situation in the city of Raqqa. Local residents, who have been forcibly returned from the camps for temporarily displaced persons, have no access to pure drinking water and suffer deeply from the shortage…

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Collected Department Releases: Remarks to the Media

Collected Department Releases: Remarks to the Media

Remarks Michael R. Pompeo Secretary of State Press Briefing Room Washington, DC September 14, 2018 SECRETARY POMPEO: Good afternoon, everyone. QUESTION: Good afternoon. SECRETARY POMPEO: Before I get started, I want to let our fellow Americans know who are affected by Hurricane Florence that our prayers are with them. I understand there may well have been loss of life. Our heart goes out to them. Thanks, too, to all the first responders, military, civilian and the like, who are doing such good work. The federal government’s help is there, and we still continue to encourage every American who’s in the threatened path to listen to…

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Collected Department Releases: Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO): Secure and Sustainable Human Rights Documentation Solutions

Collected Department Releases: Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO): Secure and Sustainable Human Rights Documentation Solutions

September 14, 2018 This is the announcement of funding opportunity number SFOP0005258 Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Number: 19.345 Application Deadline: Friday, December 7, 2018 at 11:30pm EST For new application submission instructions, see Section D below. A. Project Description The U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor (DRL) announces an open competition for organizations interested in submitting applications for projects that support the research, development, and implementation of secure human rights (HR) documentation solutions. In support of the 2017 National Security Strategy, DRL’s goal is to promote accountability for perpetrators of genocide and mass atrocities. Further, in support of the…

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