Germany and the Russian Federation: Bilateral relations

19.10.2022 - Article

With its war of aggression against Ukraine as well as the annexation of Ukrainian regions in both 2014 and 2022, Russia has violated fundamental principles of international law. This has had serious consequences for all areas of German-Russian relations. It is no longer possible under the current circumstances to continue exchanges and cooperation as before.

The European Union has reacted to the war of aggression against Ukraine with massive sanctions. These include extensive financial sanctions and strict export controls, which are having a profound impact on Russia’s economy, financial system and access to cutting-edge technology.

Russia’s role in the cyber attacks on the German Bundestag as well as its attempts at hybrid influence are also problematic. Annual intergovernmental consultations have been suspended since the illegal annexation of Crimea in 2014.

Until the start of Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine there was a lively exchange between Germany and Russia in the cultural and education sphere. While relations with independent civil society in Russia continue to be close even under the changed circumstances, cooperation with Russian state authorities has been largely halted in response to Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine.

Remembrance of the past remains important to Germany. Germany is aware of its responsibility towards Russia and the other post-Soviet states for the 27 million Soviet victims of the Second World War. It is committed to sincere remembrance based on historical facts which recognises in particular the suffering of civilian victims.

The German Government also promotes efforts to preserve the cultural identity of the German minority in Russia.

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