Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Bogdanov visits South Africa
Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov with South Africa's President Cyril Ramaphosa
22 November 2021
Russia’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Special Representative of the President of the Russian Federation for the Middle East and Africa, Mr Mikhail L. Bogdanov was on an official visit to South Africa. He had meetings with South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, with officials of the Department of Trade and Industry as well as fruitful discussions with Deputy Minster of International Relations for South Africa Mr Alvin Botes. He also engaged Heads of Mission from the Middle East represented in South Africa.
Russia’s historical relations and support for Africa’s liberation from the yoke of colonialism is well documented. Archival research, compilation and preservation for future generations are ongoing, said the Minister. We are building mutual respect and trust through bilateral and multilateral fora through our engagements and technical cooperation through our interaction in BRICS, G20 the UN amongst others.
The role of art, culture and sport is vital for creating greater awareness and understanding among humanity. People to people and face to face meetings are vital and can be achieved through travel, tourism and hospitality cooperation and this leads to trade, business and investment opportunities. This kind of soft diplomacy is key to international relations and cooperation.
It is truly sad what has happened in Afghanistan, said Deputy Minister Bogdanov, speaking about his father who was there in 1978-79. It was with the USA support of the Mujahidin that later became Al Qaeda, that exacerbated the situation. The situation is further complicated by the heroin and opium drug trade, and USA’s defeat and hasty retreat has left an untenable and tragic situation in the country facing a humanitarian crisis. No country is rushing to recognize the Taliban rule, although negotiations are ongoing, concluded the Deputy Minister.
by Kirtan Bhana