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MOSCOW, May 21. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin has highly praised on Thursday the work of Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.
"Sergey Viktorovich Lavrov and his colleagues are professionally and with dignity defending the country’s interests, consistently and effectively pursuing its foreign policy course," the president said. Putin handed to Lavrov the Order of Merit for the Motherland, 1st Degree.
The president thanked all the highly decorated "for fruitful creative work, for their allegiance to the country, commitment, for impressive results" in their work. According to Putin, "the work of each in his place multiplies the power of the whole Russia, there are no secondary jobs." "The economy, science, culture, education, social sphere, social activity - all this together creates the development potential of the country and its ability to respond to the difficult present-day challenges, to be competitive and successful, to participate equally in the settlement of the most difficult and fundamental regional and global policy issues," Putin said. He added that "a major role in this sphere belongs to our diplomacy, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs."