The head of the British foreign intelligence service MI6, Richard Moore, said that “objectively weakening Russia in economic and demographic terms” is one of the most pressing problems.
“Russia is an objectively weakening power in economic and demographic terms. She is going through an extremely difficult period, ”he told the Sunday Times on Sunday 25 April.
Moore stressed that London was worried about the large number of Russian military on the border with Ukraine, as well as the very likelihood of an “invasion of Ukraine.” At the same time, he specified that Great Britain and the United States had warned Russia about “serious consequences” in the event of such actions.
The head of British foreign intelligence noted that the situation in relations between Ukraine and the Russian Federation allows drawing a parallel with the situation in the Czech Republic, adds Gazeta.ru.
“This, of course, causes our concern. That is why we have coordinated so closely with our allies to ensure that we are delivering the tough signals, ”added the head of intelligence.
However, Moore did not specify what kind of “signals” London sends to Moscow. According to him, he has the means that allow him to contact and “convey to the leadership of the Russian Federation what he needs,” since the UK and Russia are together in the UN Security Council as permanent members.
Tensions in relations between the Russian Federation and the Czech Republic arose after the Prime Minister of the Republic Andrei Babish announced on April 17 that the country’s authorities suspected Russian special services of involvement in an explosion at an ammunition depot in Vrbetica in 2014. On the same day, the Czech Republic announced its decision to expel 18 Russian diplomats.
In turn, Russia a day later announced 20 employees of the Czech embassy in the Russian Federation persona non grata. The accusations in Russia were categorically denied, and the fact that Prague does not publish a report on the explosion, the official representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova called evidence of a lie.
As explained in the Russian Foreign Ministry, as a result of the mutual expulsions of diplomats, by May 31, seven diplomats, 25 technical staff and 19 people received on the spot will remain in the embassies of the Czech Republic and the Russian Federation. Czech Foreign Minister Jakub Kulganek cited similar data.
On April 18, the Russian ambassador to London, Andrei Kelin, stated that for almost a year and a half after his appointment, relations between Russia and Great Britain have deteriorated, and the kingdom’s authorities continue to ignore all Russian proposals for cooperation and continue to talk about the “Russian threat.”
Moscow has repeatedly noted that Western countries frighten each other with a non-existent threat from Russia, using this as an excuse to build up a military contingent near the country’s borders. In addition, the official representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, Maria Zakharova, drew attention to the aggressive information campaign launched by Ukraine and a number of Western countries due to the Russian exercises. She stressed that the planned military training activities of the Armed Forces are regularly carried out on the territory of Russia during this period and do not exceed the scale of previous years.