A lecture by His Excellency Mr Alexander Yakovenko, Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the Court of St James's.
Russia-UK bilateral relations have long historical roots that can be traced back to the reigns of Ivan the Terrible and Mary I. Despite a turbulent past, the differences between our two countries have always faded into insignificance during critical moments in European and world history. Russia and the UK were allies in both World Wars, and the 70th anniversary since the arrival of the first Arctic convoys in Operation Dervish was commemorated last year.
In a fast changing global environment, Russia and the UK face new challenges. Emerging economic and social links have created a positive dynamic for the evolution of the political relationship. Ambassador Yakovenko will discuss how the bilateral dialogue is gaining momentum, based on greater openness and more pragmatism in pursuit of national interests.
His Excellency Mr Alexander Yakovenko assumed his current appointment as Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the Court of St James's on 29 January 2011. He was previously Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs in charge of multilateral diplomacy. Having graduated from the Moscow State Institute of International Relations with a PhD in Law, he began his diplomatic career in 1976. Since then he has occupied various positions at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, including in the Department of International Organizations, the Permanent Mission of the USSR to the United Nations in New York, the Foreign Policy Planning Department, the Department of International Scientific and Technical Co-operation and the Department of Security and Disarmament. Ambassador Yakovenko has participated in numerous sessions of the UN Security Council and General Assembly, the UNESCO General Conference, various OSCE forums, negotiations on conventional armed forces in Europe and the G8 expert meetings. He was also the head of the Russian delegation at the International Space Station negotiations from 1993 to 1998.