Russian Foreign Service Officers celebrated Diplomatic Service Day, a special holiday for diplomats in Russia, with many foreign envoys and Korean diplomats at the Russian Embassy in downtown Seoul on Thursday.
“Our professional holiday is aimed at the confirmation of the value of deep traditions of the Russian diplomatic service and underlining a very important role of diplomacy in the modern world,” said Russian Ambassador to Korea Konstantin V. Vnukov in a speech during a reception at the celebration.
|Russian Ambassador to Korea Konstantin V. Vnukov and Lim Sung-nam, Korea’s chief negotiator to the Six Party Talks, raise their glasses in a toast to diplomats during a celebration of Diplomatic Service Day in a reception at the Russian Embassy in Seoul, Thursday. (Philip Iglauer/The Korea Herald)|
“Nowadays, the main task of Russian diplomats is to assist the comprehensive modernization of Russia and to set out its economy on the path of innovation, as well as to create favorable external conditions for that,” he said.
Diplomatic Service Day was established by President Vladimir Putin with an executive order in 2002. The date Feb. 10 was chosen because the earliest mention of Russia’s first foreign affairs agency, called “Posolsky Prikaz,” occurred more than 500 years ago on Feb. 10, 1549.
A lot more is expected of Russian diplomats these days, as new areas of international relations are included in the sphere of diplomatic activity that stem from globalization and the integration of Russia into world politics and economy, the Russian embassy said in a statement about the meaning of Diplomatic Service Day.
The best traditions of Russian diplomats have always been enlightened patriotism, professional culture and a profound understanding of the country’s national interests. These traditions are the foundation on which the Russian Foreign Service was built, the statement said.
Lim Sung-nam, Korea’s chief negotiator in the six-party talks, which include Russia, said a celebration of Russia’s Foreign Service also underscores stronger bilateral cooperation on science and technology.
“The successful launch of Korea’s space rocket is evidence of the ever-stronger relations between Korea and Russia,” Lim said in a speech during the reception.
Traditionally on this day, the Ministry’s staff pays tribute in memory of previous generations of workers of Russia’s Foreign Service by laying flowers at the graves of the outstanding Russian diplomats buried in Russia and in countries around the world.
By Philip Iglauer