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Russian Amb. Ivashentsov stresses
Russia Will Assist Inter-Korean Business Ties
In Speech on Occasion of Its Diplomatic Service Day
Russian Ambassador to Seoul Gleb A.Ivashentsov holds a press conference at Russina Embassy in Seoul on Feb. 5, 2007

Russian Ambassador to Seoul Gleb A.Ivashentsov emphasized that Russian will help South Korea for its inter-Korean business relations including inter-Korean railways and oil pipelines at a press conference held at the Russian Embassy in Seoul on Feb. 5, 2007. In his speech he also stressed that Russian will do its utmost for the successful result of the six-party talks on North Korea's nuclear issue. The following is the full text of Amb. Ivashentsov's speech.

Dear friends,

I am happy to welcome each of you in the Embassy of the Russian Federation at a press conference on the Day of the Diplomatic Service of Russia. That day is formally observed in my country.

I have invited you here to share with you what tasks the Russian diplomacy sets for itself today. For me, the Ambassador of Russia in the Republic of Korea, it is very important, that the public of your country has a clear vision of it. Our two states are close neighbours and active partners. By geography and history they are set to jointly settle many common issues.

The present Russia is confidently looking forward to the future. The difficulties of the so called "transition period" of 1990-s have been overcome. As for the growth rates the country has been one of the world leaders for four consecutive years. The high demands for Russian exports in the international markets made it possible to accumulate huge financial reserves. In foreign currency reserves alone Russia is the third in the world.

Russian Ambassador to Seoul Gleb A.Ivashentsov in press conference

President V.V.Putin of Russia has set the task to take serious steps to encourage investments to the industrial infrastructure and innovations. Russia intends to fully utilize its capacities in such high-tech spheres as modern power production, including nuclear power based on save new generation reactors, communications, space exploration and aircraft industry as well as to become a major provider of intellectual services. A mighty breakthrough in those fields, where the country has been traditionally strong, would give us a chance to use them as a locomotive for overall development.

With her internal strengthening Russia is becoming once again an influential independent actor in world politics and economics, when she is capable on par with other leading powers to participate in formulating and implementing the global agenda. Without Russia and despite Russia, not a single international problem of any significance can be solved.

Earlier than many, Russia was able to comprehend the lessons of the Cold War and give up ideology in favour of common sense. Millions of people of the world rightly associate Russia with the collapse of "the iron curtain," with establishing of collective principles in the world politics and with formation of a new, more secure, fair and democratic system of international relations.

Russia is open for constructive dialogue and equal cooperation with all states without exception. With many countries, including the CIS neighbours, China, India, Egypt, Brazil and the G8 members, we have already reached or are reaching the level of strategic partnership. And in the world as a whole, forces are gaining momentum that are keen to see a powerful and sovereign Russia. Given, of course, that the notion of the power and greatness of a state is defined differently than in the past: mainly in terms of so called soft power, which is understood to mean, inter alia, the skill to "play in team," readiness to advance a positive agenda across the spectrum of international problems, and ability to cherish one's cultural and civilizational distinctiveness while respecting the diversity of the world's cultures and traditions.

Unfortunately, some have to literally overstep themselves for dealings with Russia on an equal basis. This is not our fault. But this turns into a general trouble of global politics, as it is designed to maintain a status quo taken to mean the privileged position of individual states in an evolving international system. That has nothing to do with envy or grievance.

Firstly, any claims to leadership must be supported by actions, yield added value in the form of "common boons." It is not visible yet that unilateral response would help solve existing problems. Rather, while failing to solve them, it creates new ones. Secondly, the very character of global challenges and threats requires a global response.

Constructive relationship with the Republic of Korea is one of priorities of Russia's politics in Asia. Today they are steadily approaching the level of trustful and comprehensive partnership. There is not a single sphere of human activities not covered by the two countries' cooperation. We successfully interact in the United Nations and other international forums.

Similarity of the two countries approaches to major international issues, such as formation of the new, multi-polar world order with the key role for the UN, non-acceptance of diktat in inter-state relations, combat to international terrorism and securing non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, is a substantial basis for that interaction. We in Russia welcome the election of Ban Ki-moon the 8 th UN Security General. We view that election as a convincing evidence of the high esteem which the international community holds for the constructive role of the Republic of Korea in world efforts.

Two our states do actively interact in the settlement of the nuclear issue of the Korean Peninsula as well. That issue is of a direct concern for Russia. The site of the nuclear test by the DPRK on October 9 th, 2006 is situated at the distance of just 177 Kms to our border. We do not like that. We do not need in the proximity of our borders neither nuclear and missile tests nor saber-rattling by anyone.

As announced, the Six-Parties Talks on the nuclear issue of the Korean Peninsula will restart in Beijing on February 8 th. Russia intends to continuously work to the success of these Talks. We understand that the issue of security in the Northeast Asia is complicated and multifaceted and that its settlement will need long-term and laborious negotiations. But, as the Chinese say, the longest march of Ten Thousand leagues starts with the first step. The talks in Beijing are to become that first step.

Russia is prepared to contribute to the Inter-Korean normalization as well. My country constantly supports building bridges between Seoul and Pyongyang and stands in favour of undertaking of multilateral infrastructural and other economic projects on the Korean Peninsula. We think that the participation of the DPRK in the international railway corridor between Europe and Korea as well as it's joining programs of creating in the Northeast Asia an integrated electric power grid and pipelines' net would serve further development of mutually beneficial and good-neighbourly relations between two Korean States.

The developments on the Korean Peninsula are to much extent to influence the future of not only the Northeast Asia and the Asian Pacific Area as a whole but the world processes as well. I will single out just two main aspects. On one hand, the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula would create a principally important precedent for settling similar issues in other parts of the world and would thereby become a weighty contribution to strengthening the non-proliferation regime. On the other hand, the Six-Parties' Talks represent a pattern for a collective decision-making on a hottest international issue, a pattern which is extremely important in the present international situation. It is on such a basis only, not by one-sided forcible actions and attempts to monopolize the processes of conflict defusing that there is a chance to stabilize the present disbalanced system of international relations and to promote its deideologization and demilitarization.

Dear friends,

The tasks which the Russian diplomacy sets for itself are straight and clear. They are aimed to create favorable external conditions for safe and prosperous life of people of Russia. The absolute majority of other states want the same for their citizens. But in the modern inter-dependent world that could be achieved only by joint efforts, acting together in the spirit of partnership.

We do not close our eyes to the existing differences, practice of double standards and relapses of the bloc mentality. But it is not that what determines the main direction of the world development. Coming to the foreground are the issues, which unite the world not otherwise.

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