Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s opening remarks at a meeting with participants in the Fourth Forum of Young Diplomats, Moscow, July 20, 2017

Monday, 24 July 2017 11:11

Good afternoon,

It gives me great pleasure to welcome you to this forum. I would like to begin by expressing gratitude to the organisers of these meetings. It is the fourth such meeting held since April 2014, when the Foreign Ministry’s Council of Young Diplomats advanced the idea of a forum for young foreign ministry employees from former Soviet republics. Today, I am happy to welcome all of you here, especially young diplomats from Moldova and Uzbekistan, who are attending this forum for the first time, as far as I know. I am sure that you will find it interesting.

We monitor such forums, where discussions are held in a trust-based and informal atmosphere without any news conferences. Your main task is to understand each other better and to gain an insight into your partners’ foreign policy in order to improve your professional skills. Although your discussions are held behind closed doors, we can see how they develop and what results they bring. In the past few years, your forum usually concludes with the signing of joint documents, which is directly connected with the improvement of your professional skills. We have a favourable view on this.

I have been told that one result of our joint negotiations was the idea of holding more than a regional forum of young diplomats. The Russian Foreign Ministry’s Council of Young Diplomats not only holds meeting with peers from the post-Soviet countries but also forums that are attended by delegates from the BRICS countries and other regions. They are planning to further expand the horizons. It has been proposed to create an international association of young diplomats and to hold the first international forum in connection with the upcoming World Festival of Youth and Students, which will take place in Sochi in October. I believe it is a very interesting idea. We will provide the necessary logistics and organisational support. We hope to see all of you at the planned international event. The meeting you are holding today can be described as a regional event, while the proposed forum will be the first of its kind to be held in the global format.

I wish you productive discussions, successful work at your departments, good luck and happiness.

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