Russia needs to promote its positive image abroad – Putin

Kremlin and St. Basil's

NOVO-OGARYOVO. Feb 11 (Interfax) – President Vladimir Putin has emphasized the need for “soft force” mechanisms in Russian Foreign Ministry operations.

“Obviously, ‘classic’ diplomacy is, if not particularly out of date, then seriously transformed. You and your colleagues have to deal with the economy, developing business relations, supporting various economic projects and opening new promising markets,” Putin told Russian Foreign Ministry staff members decorated with state awards on Monday.

There are also energy and food security, climate change and science and technology cooperation, the president said.

The area of diplomats covers cultural and humanitarian relations, multi-dimensional interaction with civil society and support for compatriots and Russian citizens who find themselves in a difficult situation abroad, the head of state said.

“The correct use of “soft force” mechanisms is a priority, such as a stronger position for the Russian language, promotion of Russia’s positive image abroad and ability of organic integration into global information flows,” Putin said.

“I would like to emphasize that turbulent and dynamic global affairs compel the foreign political service to be ahead of time, not just to act rapidly,” Putin said.

He stressed the need for continuation of the course towards stability and predictability in international relations and promotion of common and indivisible security.

“We need to carry on our active work towards peace settlement of conflicts, the number of which is growing instead of lessening, to our regret, and which have a negative effect on the global situation,” Putin said.

It is important to ensure the supremacy of international laws and the truly central role of the United Nations, the president said.

These principled approaches will be linked with Russian chairmanship at leading international forums in the next few years, Putin said.

“Bearing in mind the successful hosting of the APEC Vladivostok summit, it is necessary to organize the events of the G20, the G8, BRICS and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization with equal attention,” Putin said.