Russian long-range military aircraft regularly perform flights to remote geographic areas in order to train crews and certify equipment capabilities. These activities are conducted in strict accordance with international airspace regulations, without violation of other states’ national borders. This can be confirmed by objective control data in every particular case.
At the same time, the intensity of Russian long-range aviation flights cannot compare to overall activity of military aircraft of NATO States and some of the closest partners of the Alliance. Particularly, in 2014 one could notice considerable growth of flights by US and NATO States’ reconnaissance aircraft over the territory of the Baltic States, as well as over the Baltic and Barents Seas – up to 8-12 flights per week. Their air routes laid in the immediate vicinity of Russian borders.
US Air Force RC-135 strategic reconnaissance aircraft performed more than 140 such flights in 2014, compared to 22 flights in 2013.
28 January 2015
I APPRECIATE the opportunity to address the readers of Horizons, published by the Center for International Relations and Sustainable Development (CIRSD). CIRSD makes valuable contributions to analyzing the most important issues of our time and to searching for effective ways to respond to common global challenges.

International relations are going through a complicated stage of development—as one historical epoch replaces the other, with a new polycentric world order now taking shape. It is a process accompanied by increasing instability—both at global and regional levels. Risks of deeper inter-confessional and inter-civilizational splits are growing. The world economy remains unstable, and might still relapse into crisis.

The global situation has been deteriorating recently, with new dangerous hotbeds of tension emerging, in addition to old conflicts. An upsurge of terrorism and extremism, both in the Middle East and North Africa, are causes of serious concern. The security situation in Europe is all but satisfactory.
27 January 2015
Tension in Ukraine’s southeast has again sharply escalated. The offensive launched by the Ukrainian forces and their on-going shelling of peaceful cities and villages, add to the growing civilian death toll and cause enormous damage to the infrastructure of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions. All this is taking place against the backdrop of militarist statements made by Ukrainian leaders, in conjunction with their more frequent visits to the zone of the so-called anti-terrorist and, in fact, punitive operation and a new wave of mobilisation. Also, this has somehow coincided with the arrival in Kiev of the commander of the US ground forces in Europe. Meanwhile, we haven’t heard a single criticism of the Ukrainian “hawks” from western partners. At the same time, instead, we are witnessing an increasing number of statements calling for additional sanctions against the Russian Federation.
On January 29, the EU Foreign Affairs Council is scheduled to hold an emergency session in Brussels, which, in all probability, instead of discussing ways of resolving the conflict, will again focus on unconditional support of any demands put forward by Kiev.
21 January 2015
Ladies and gentlemen,
Welcome to our annual meeting on Russia’s diplomatic performance.
The situation last year was more complicated than previously, as new dangerous seats of tensions complemented several smouldering chronic conflicts. Especially alarming was the situation in the Middle East and North Africa, where extremist and terrorist threats were growing and spreading to other regions and to which Russia consistently tried to attract the attention of its partners. The risk that religious and societal divides will grow has not diminished. The global economic situation is far from clear.
We believe that the developments of the past few years show convincingly that global security issues can only be resolved through concerted efforts. But cooperative actions by the international community are hindered by a number of negative trends. The most important of them are fundamental differences between the objective process of the decentralisation of power in the world and the development of a more democratic polycentric world order on the one hand, and persistent attempts by the “historical” West to preserve global leadership at all costs and to enforce its approaches and values, including through the use of force on the other participants of international relations, on the other hand. The situation in Ukraine is a perfect reflection of this policy.
20 January 2015
Question: Mr Ulyanov, a regular meeting of the Conference on Disarmament began in Geneva on 20 January. What initiatives does Russia plan to present there?
Mikhail Ulyanov: We won’t advance new initiatives this time. But there is an initiative that is still on the agenda. It concerns preventing the militarisation of outer space.
Unfortunately, the Conference on Disarmament has been idle for years. Tasked to negotiate disarmament agreements, it has been unable to agree on an agenda, because the participating countries have different priorities and are unwilling to compromise for the sake of consensus. This is not a positive situation but objective reality, which we should take into account.
The main current issue for Russia is to prevent the militarisation of outer space. Last summer, Russia and China submitted to the Conference on Disarmament a revised draft of the treaty on the prevention of the placement of weapons in outer space. This revised draft takes remarks by other countries into account.
You know that the ballistic missile defence programmes of the United States and NATO would seriously change the situation in the area of strategic stability and negatively influence arms control. This also concerns outer space, where the placement of weapons would change the situation dramatically, and not for the better. This is why Russia has been trying to use what time is left to prevent the militarisation of outer space.
Permanent Representative
Alexander V. GRUSHKO
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