MUNICH, February 18. /TASS/. Russia’s Foreign Minister Lavrov is to speak at the Munich Security Conference and to take part in the meeting of the Foreign Ministers of the Normandy format (Russia, Germany, France, Ukraine) He will also have a number of a bilateral meetings on the sidelines of the conference.
The Munich Security Conference traditionally brings together the heads of state, government, international organizations and influential experts. Russian representatives have taken part in it since the late 1990s.
Russian President Vladimir Putin delivered a report titled "Russia’s role in international politics" at the conference ten years ago. In his speech he stressed that attempts to establish the unipolar world order system pose threat to global community and that NATO had violated its promises not to expand the bloc to Russia's borders.
A year ago speaking at the Munich Security Conference, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev warned that the world had "slid into a new period of Cold War."
This year, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov will present the Russian view of the main international security issues. By tradition, after his speech Lavrov will answer questions from panelists. The discussion will obviously focus on the strengthening of NATO's position in Eastern Europe, Russia's relations with the United States under President Administration Donald Trump, the prospects for the European security system recovery. Most likely, the Minister will be asked about Russia's plans in the Syrian settlement and the situation in Ukraine.
The Ukrainian crisis will be discussed in detail at the meeting of the Normandy format on the level of foreign ministers, which will take place on the sidelines of the conference. The parties are expected to focus on reduction of tension in Donbass (east of Ukraine), which escalated again in the early 2017.
The Foreign Ministers of the Normandy format met in Munich in 2016. Then negotiations took less than an hour. The parties confirmed the need to observe the Minsk agreements, but failed to achieve any significant results.
In Munich Russian Foreign Minister will also hold bilateral meetings with Croatia’s President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic, Minister of Foreign Affairs of France Jean-Marc Ayrault, head of European diplomacy Federica Mogherini, Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman, Minister of Foreign Affairs of South Korea Yong Xie Bin and Director General of the IAEA Yukiya Amano.