JOINT WRF-RUSI NATO-RUSSIA RELATIONS DEBATE
His Excellency Mr Alexander Grushko, Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to NATO, will be joined by the Rt Hon Sir Malcolm Rifkind, Senior Associate Fellow of RUSI, for a dialogue on the current challenges facing Russia-NATO relations and possibilities of engagement at a time of increased friction. Sir Rodric Braithwaite, former British Ambassador to the Soviet Union and subsequently to the Russian Federation, will chair the discussion.
After on the record discussion there was an interesting off-record Q&A session followed by drinks reception in the famous RUSI Library.
His Excelleny Mr Alexander Grushko graduated from the Moscow State Institute of International Relations in 1977 and has subsequently served in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia. He has held a number of senior diplomatic posts at home and abroad, including: Head of Division, Department for Security Affairs and Disarmament of the MFA of Russia from 1995 to 1996; Head of the Russian Delegation on Military Security and Arms Control in the negotiating forums in Vienna, Representative of the Russian Federation to the Joint Consultative Group on the CFE Treaty and the Open Skies Consultative Commission at the OSCE Forum for Security and Cooperation from 1996 to 2000; Deputy Director, Department of European Cooperation from 2001 to 2002 and Director of the Department of European Cooperation from November 2002 to September 2005. He served as Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs with responsibility for European and Euro-Atlantic organisations from 2005 to 2012. Ambassador Grushko assumed his current appointment as Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to NATO in October 2012.
The Rt Hon Sir Malcolm Rifkind KCMG QC was elected as Conservative Member of Parliament for Pentlands in 1974 and represented that constituency until 1997. He was elected as Member of Parliament for Kensington in May 2010 and remained in Parliament until 2015. Sir Malcolm became a member of the Cabinet in 1986 as Secretary of State for Scotland. In 1990 he became Secretary of State for Transport and in 1992 Secretary of State for Defence. From 1995 to 1997 he was Foreign Secretary. He served as the Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions and Welfare Reform until December 2005 when he chose to return to the backbenches. He served as UK representative on the Commonwealth Eminent Persons Group 2010 to 2011 and as Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament, which provides oversight of the UK’s intelligence agencies (MI6, MI5 and GCHQ) from 2010-15. He is currently a member of the OSCE’s Eminent Persons Group, which will report on relations between Russia and the West.
Sir Rodric Braithwaite GCMG was educated at Christ’s College, University of Cambridge, where he achieved First Class Honours in Modern Languages. He went on to serve in HM Diplomatic Service, with postings in Jakarta, Warsaw, Moscow, Rome, Brussels (British delegation to the European Community) and Washington. Between 1984 and 1988 he served as a member of the Sherpa Team (preparing HM’s Government for the G7 Economic Summits), and from 1988-92 was HM Ambassador in Moscow. Other appointments included Foreign Policy Adviser to the Prime Minister, the Rt Hon [now Sir] John Major, and Chairman of the Joint Intelligence Committee. Sir Rodric has had a number of academic appointments, including time as a Visiting Fellow, All Souls College, University of Oxford; Honorary Fellow, Christ’s College, University of Cambridge and as Visiting Fellow, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Washington. His books include Across the Moscow River and the highly praised and bestselling Moscow 1941. His latest book, Afgantsy: The Russians in Afghanistan 1979-89, draws on all the insights he has gathered in sixty years of involvement with Russia.