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Meeting with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres

June 2, 2017, St Petersburg

Vladimir Putin had a meeting with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on the sidelines of the St Petersburg International Economic Forum.

During the meeting, current international issues were discussed, among other things.

The President of Russia noted that the UN is the only universal international venue with unique rights based on the UN Charter, the cornerstone of international public law.

* * *

President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr Secretary General, it gives me great pleasure to welcome you in Russia once again. This time you have come to take part in the St Petersburg International Economic Forum.

Last year, Mr Ban Ki-moon attended this event. The presence of the UN Secretary General at the St Petersburg International Economic Forum is becoming a good tradition.

It is important for us that you hear what we talk about at such representative events, and how. As you know, we have always been interested in cooperation and have always supported the UN.

We still believe that it is the only universal international venue with unique rights based on the United Nations Charter, the cornerstone of international public law.

I am happy to see you and will be pleased to talk about the problems that you consider most relevant. Naturally, this will probably concern matters in hot spots.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres (retranslated): Mr President, thank you very much for the invitation. It has always been a great pleasure for me to come to Russia, especially to St Petersburg.

Cooperation between Russia and the UN is the cornerstone of all international relations in the world today. Russia – at that time the Soviet Union – was a founding state.

In addition, Russia is a permanent member of the UN Security Council, so cooperation between the UN and Russia as key participants in the international world order is extremely important.

Recently, we have been observing some disturbing trends: phenomena such as xenophobia, racism and also irrational behaviour, including the isolationist approach adopted by certain states.

This is why today it is extremely important to defend the multilateral approach, and in this case the UN plays the most important role in upholding this multilateral international approach, and Russia’s adherence to this multilateral approach is extremely important.

One reason why this multilateral approach is so important is in fact the existence of the hot spots that you, Mr President, have mentioned – the existence of areas of instability.


June 2, 2017, St Petersburg