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Lavrov Used Foul Language With Miliband, Report Says

Published: September 16, 2008 (Issue # 1408)


LONDON Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov subjected his British counterpart to a torrent of four-letter words during a telephone call over the situation in Georgia, The Daily Telegraph newspaper reported.

The paper said that Lavrov repeatedly used foul language as British Foreign Secretary David Miliband warned him that Europe would reassess its ties with Russia following the countrys invasion of Georgia last month.

According to the Telegraph, the conversation was so laden with obscenities it was difficult to draft a readable summary.

The paper cited an unidentified insider as the source of its information but did not say when the exchange took place.

In Moscow, the Foreign Ministry denied the report and on Saturday accused the British government of deliberately leaking its version of the exchange to the media.

Such leaks are probably aimed at attaining political ends and pouring oil on the flames of hysteria surrounding Russias actions in the Caucasus, ministry spokesman Andrei Nesterenko said, Interfax reported. As we understand, the leak was authorized by David Miliband.

Britains Foreign Office denied that allegation but did not comment on the tenor of the conversation.

We dont go into the details of confidential discussions between foreign ministers, a Foreign Office spokeswoman said Friday.

The spokeswoman refused to comment further and demanded to speak anonymously in line with department policy.

Nesterenko promised that Russias transcript of Lavrovs conversation with Miliband would soon be posted to the Foreign Ministrys web site.

British-Russian relations are at a post-Cold War low after Russia refused to extradite a suspect in the poisoning death of Alexander Litvinenko in London in 2006 and closed offices of the British Council earlier this year.





 


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Friday, Apr. 18


Teachers and students alike shouldnt miss the opportunity to establish lasting contacts with Russian and foreign institutions during the 21st Education and Career Fair at LenExpo, beginning today and finishing tomorrow. Learn more about education in Russia and connect with your fellow scholars.


The Tromso International Film Festival, Norways largest, brings a short festival to St. Petersburg for one day only during Scandinavian Oddities, starting at 7 p.m. today at Rodina Cinema Center. Tickets for the event are 100 rubles ($2.80).


Sunday, Apr. 20


Celebrate Easter at Pavlovsk during the Easter Fair that begins today and continues through next Sunday. Visitors will have the chance to paint Easter eggs and children can take part in games as well as help decorate a tree in honor of Christianitys holiest day.


Today is one of the final days to see the exhibit Cacti Children of the Sun at the Peter the Great Botanical Garden. Starting Apr. 17, budding botanists will marvel at the variety and beauty of the deserts most iconic plant.


Monday, Apr. 21


Improve your grasp of Neruda, Bolano and Marquez at TrueDAs Beginners Spanish Lesson this evening at their location on the Petrograd Side. An experienced teacher will be on hand to help all attendees better understand the intricacies of the language and improve their accent.


Tuesday, Apr. 22


SPIBAs Breakfast with the Director event series continues as the association welcomes Andrei Barannikov, general director of SPN Communications, to the Anna Pavlova Hall of the Angleterre Hotel this morning at 9 a.m. Attendees must confirm their participation by Apr. 21.


The AmCham Environment, Health and Safety Committee Meeting is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. this morning in the their St. Petersburg office.