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UK-Russia diplomatic row worsens

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posted on Jan, 14 2008 @ 07:00 PM
I recently ran across an article from BBC which discussed the United Kingdoms refusal to shut down two regional cultural offices that were ordered shut by Russia in a worsening diplomatic row.

The article can be found here

A particular quote caught my eye:

"Emerging from his brief meeting in the Russian capital, British ambassador Sir Tony Brenton said he had told Vladimir Titov, the deputy foreign minister, a "serious disagreement" existed between the two countries.
Mr Titov had handed him "a long piece of paper setting out the Russian legal view on the work of the British Council", he said. "

Has anyone here on ATS come across this long piece of paper setting out the Russian legal view on the work of the British Council? And is this the viewpoint of the Russian parliament? Putin?

posted on Jan, 14 2008 @ 11:00 PM
I don't think that paper will come to light, but most likely it consists of empty accusations. I seriously doubt that the Russian government has any justified reasons to close the offices. This is all purely retaliatory in nature. The tough relations between Russia and UK stretch back years, and UK appears to be very antagonistic in its activities and demands (stretching back to Litvinenko case and Russian criminals being comforted by the UK government).

But whether Russian demands to close the Council offices are justified, the UK must comply. By refusing to comply, the UK is only making the situation worse. It was UK that started the "diplomatic war" by throwing Russian diplomats out. They are guests in the country, and I don't think that the diplomatic protection of embassies stretches to such organizations as the British Council, but I may be wrong.

As for whose viewpoint it is - there is not much difference between the parliament and Putin anymore. They are one. Something of this profile probably goes through the President's office.

By the way tax-related accusations in Russia are a well known political tool to deal with organizations and individuals. Because of a large degree of undercollection by the government and many loop holes, the government is able to accuse nearly anyone of failing to pay certain taxes. It is as if the government is intentionally letting people and businesses violate the tax laws, so it can come after them later.

[edit on 14-1-2008 by maloy]

posted on Jan, 15 2008 @ 12:52 AM
putin is playing aclever game .he has people around him that are yes men.very dangerous men who will stop at nothing to remain in power,as they have already demonstrated.democracy has all but gone in russia, putin dictates.he is using the vast gas and oil fields as a weapon against any country that stands up to him,that is why we must invest heavily in nuclear country can afford to let putin or his pupets dictate their foriegn policy.we are heading into a new cold war and we had better be ready for it because putin is.this fall out with the uk is just a taste of what is to come.putin sees the eu as a threat to his country,because it is growing in size and strength.he also knows that russia will not be allowed to join because it is to big and to powerful and would dominate.


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