I am grateful for this invitation to once again speak at the Moscow Conference on International Security organised by the Russian Ministry of Defence. On behalf of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, I would like to welcome its participants coming from various countries and multilateral organisations.
Russia is interested in combining efforts to stabilise the situation in the world and to discover the best answers to the many problems of our time. I am confident that the high level of representation of foreign guests will contribute to this in every possible way.
Collaboration is especially relevant today, with the dangerous accumulation of conflict potential in the world. We can see how efforts are being intensified to dismantle the architecture of international security formed following WWII. The fundamental rules of interstate communication stipulated in the UN Charter are being grossly violated.
This destructive trend did not emerge just yesterday. This year marks two tragic anniversaries in modern history. Twenty years ago, NATO forces bombed Yugoslavia, including a TV centre, passenger trains and other civilian facilities protected by international humanitarian law. It is amazing that NATO leaders today refer to those criminal actions as their achievements in the fight for democracy, trying to justify aggression against a sovereign UN member state. With their policy of dismembering Yugoslavia, NATO members have destroyed the principle of the inviolability of borders in Europe documented in the Helsinki Final Act.
The other event is also well-known to us. Five years ago the US and the EU openly interfered in the domestic affairs of another sovereign state – Ukraine. They provoked and supported an anti-constitutional coup, that is, committed yet another serious violation of international law. As a result, Ukraine ended up in a fratricidal stand-off, having become a major source of regional instability. We believe the new Ukrainian leadership will assume responsibility in full and will help overcome the crisis in the country, by scrupulously implementing the Minsk Package of Measures as a party to the Contact Group and the Normandy format in full compliance with resolution 2202 of the UN Security Council. Germany and France are expected to play a significant role in preventing any attempts to revisit the Minsk Agreements on resolving the situation in Donbass that were approved by the UN Security Council.