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Russia: Military intervention in Syria is unacceptable
Military intervention in Syria is unacceptable even if it aims to create an air-protected humanitarian corridor, Russian FM Sergey Lavrov has said. Syria is one of most hotly debated topics at an annual Security Conference taking place in Germany.
"Russia does not support the idea of a humanitarian corridor in Syria. Any use of military power is unacceptable, and not just because we still remember what it lead to in Libya," Lavrov said while addressing the Munich Security Conference. "We need to see the world the way it is. We need to recognize that military operations bring more chaos into the international matters and can send off waves of instability that will be impossible to hide from in any of what we may think as an island of security."
Despite the worsening situation in the region, peace is still within reach, Lavrov explained: "The war in Syria could be over if all sides stuck honestly and loyally to the principles of the June 30 Geneva conference."
(Reuters / Goran Tomasevic)
But US Vice President Joe Biden expressed a different view of how peace could be brought to Syria. "President Assad, a tyrant hellbent on clinging to power, is not longer fit to lead the Syrian people and must go," Biden said in his Munich speech.
Lavrov, however, expressed doubts about the right of the US to decide the legitimacy of the Syrian government:
“Who of the leaders are legitimate, who is not? When you can cooperate with the authoritarian regimes, whether secular or not, or when you can sponsor fights against them? In which cases do you recognize democratic choices of a nation or cut all ties with them? What criteria or standards do you use for that?"
Lavrov also said that countries involved in brokering peace in the troubled region "could agree to support democratic reforms in countries on the path for changes, but not impose on them a whatever scale of values, accepting there exist multiple models for development."
The Russian Foreign Minister has also met for the first time with Syrian opposition chief Moaz al-Khatib on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference.
The Munich Security Conference is an annual gathering of top security officials that focuses on issues surrounding European-Atlantic security, the situation in Syria and Mali, as well as non-proliferation and arms control.
Battle of Stalingrad: Russia marks 70th anniversary of key WWII fight
3\1\13. The anniversary of the Soviet victory in what was the biggest land battle of WWII will was widely celebrated throughout Russia on Saturday. About 1,000 guests arrived in Volgograd – formerly Stalingrad – to participate in the celebrations, including a military parade, battle reconstructions, fireworks and more.
The bloodiest and longest standoff of WWII – the Battle of Stalingrad – lasted 200 days and claimed 2 million lives. Russia is marking the 70th anniversary of this epic struggle, which became the turning point leading to overthrow of Nazi Germany.
In honor of the celebrations, the city is changing back to its old name of Stalingrad. In 1961, following the Soviet policy of deconstructing the cult of personality around Stalin, the city was renamed Volgograd.
On Friday, Russian President Vladimir Putin hosted a reception at the Kremlin to honor some 200 WWII veterans. “We have to do everything so the memory of the Battle of Stalingrad, the truth about it, will never fade away,” Putin said.“From this point – from the unbowed city – our forces began their march to Berlin.”
Russia returns to world bandy Olympus
3\1\13. Russia has reclaimed the world bandy crown beating reigning holders Sweden in the World Championships final, 4-3.
After exchanging goals early in the first half Mikhail Yuriev’s charges took full control of the game courtesy of their leader Evgeny Ivanushkin’s brace and never let the hosts level things on the ice.
The ending turned out to be hot though. First, the teams started a brawl involving several players, which was quickly stopped by the referees. But a few moments later Ivanushkin unintentionally collided with one of them forcing the game to be suspended for a while as the ref couldn’t continue.
The Swedes attacked the Russians deep into stoppage time but that was all they managed as the final whistle marked Russia’s win, 4-3.
This is Russia’s seventh world gold in the country’s modern history while Soviet players won the title twice as many times.
PRESS SERVICE OF THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION (PSERF)