President Vladimir Putin has called for greater openness on the part of the Russian Foreign Ministry. Speaking on Friday at the conference of Russian ambassadors, he said that "superfluous closeness and the inability to work with the mass media and other institutions of a civil society are not for our good." The head of the state pointed out that the ability of diplomats "to influence public opinion affects the objective perception of Russia in the world." Therefore, said the President addressing the conference participants, the prestige of the Russian Foreign Ministry and, ultimately, of Russia itself "will depend on how effectively you will act in this direction." The President also dwelt on the personnel policy of the Foreign Ministry. He admitted that one of the causes of the "personnel hunger" in the Foreign Ministry is the low salaries of the diplomats. Having pointed out that in the past year some questions in this sphere have already been solved, Vladimir Putin emphasised that the Foreign Ministry should think not only about social aspects but also about creating stimuli for the professional growth of the members of its staff, on which, in the final analysis, depends the prestige of diplomatic service.
The President came out for a more active attraction of women to the work in the foreign policy sphere.
In conclusion, the head of the state underscored that "the tremendous potential of the country has been preserved and, despite any losses, it has remained tremendous."
Putin said that NATO increased its military personnel by 10,000 people in the areas where NATO troops should not even be in accordance with key documents
The choice of the city of Helsinki is not incidental as the capital of Finland had hosted US-Soviet negotiations on the limitation of nuclear stockpiles in 1969