The foreign relations of the Russian Federation is the policy arm of the government of Russia which guides its interactions with other nations, their citizens, and foreign organizations. This article covers the foreign policy of the Russian Federation since the dissolution of the Soviet Union in late 1991. At present, Russia has no diplomatic relations with Ukraine due to its ongoing invasion of Ukraine. Other than Ukraine, Russia also has no diplomatic relations with Georgia, Bhutan, Federated States of Micronesia and Solomon Islands.

The Kremlin's foreign policy debates show a conflict between three rival schools: Atlanticists, seeking a closer relationship with the United States and the Western World in general; Imperialists, seeking a recovery of the semi-hegemonic status lost during the previous decade; and Neo-Slavophiles, promoting the isolation of Russia within its own cultural sphere. While Atlanticism was the dominant ideology during the first years of the new Russian Federation, under Andrei Kozyrev, it came under attack for its failure to defend Russian pre-eminence in the former USSR. The promotion of Yevgeny Primakov to Minister of Foreign Affairs in 1996 marked the beginning of a more nationalistic approach to foreign policy.[1]: 33–69 

Another major trend has been Eurasianism, a school of thought that emerged during the early 20th century. Eurasianists assert that Russia is composed of Slavic, Turkic and Asiatic cultures and equates Liberalism with Eurocentric imperialism. One of the earliest ideologues of Eurasianism was the Russian historian Nikolai Trubetzkoy, who denounced the Europhilic Czar Peter I and advocated Russian embracal of the Asiatic "legacy of Chinggis Khan" to establish a trans-continental Eurasian state. Following the collapse of Soviet Union, Eurasianism gained public ascendency through the writings of philosopher Aleksandr Dugin and has become the official ideological policy under the government of Vladimir Putin.[a]

Vladimir Putin's presidency lasted from January 2000 to May 2008, and again from May 2012 to the present. Under Putin, Russia has engaged in several notable conflicts, including against the neighboring countries of Ukraine and Georgia. He recognized the independence of new republics within those countries.[6][7] Relations with the United States in particular have sharply deteriorated between 2001 and 2022, while relations with the European Union deteriorated especially since Russia's 2014 annexation of Crimea from Ukraine. In a poll conducted by Levada Center in 2021, 64% of Russian citizens identify Russia as a non-European country; while only 29% regard Russia to be part of Europe.[8]

On 24 February 2022, Russia launched a large-scale invasion of Ukraine, prompting the imposition of substantial economic and political sanctions by the European Union, the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, and other countries. The Russian government now has a specified "Unfriendly Countries List" which indicates those countries with which relations are now strained (or non-existent). Despite deteriorating relations with most of the international community since the invasion of Ukraine, Russia still maintains support and strong relations with certain countries, such as China,[9] Belarus,[9] Kyrgyzstan,[10] Iran,[9] Cuba,[9] Venezuela,[9] Nicaragua,[9] Syria,[9] North Korea,[9] Myanmar,[9] Eritrea,[9] Mali,[9] Zimbabwe,[11] Central African Republic,[11] Afghanistan,[12] Burkina Faso[13] and Niger.[14]

Russia also maintains positive relations with countries that have been described as "Russia-leaning" according to The Economist. These countries include Algeria, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Laos, Pakistan, Ethiopia, Sudan, and Uganda.[15] Russia also maintains positive relations with countries considered neutral on the world stage such as India and Vietnam. With countries traditionally considered Western aligned, Russia maintains positive relations with Hungary,[16] Serbia,[17] Turkey,[16] Qatar,[16] Egypt,[18] Saudi Arabia,[19] and the United Arab Emirates.[19]


Main articles: Foreign policy of the Russian Empire and Foreign relations of the Soviet Union

Foreign policies

Main articles: Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Russia) and Foreign policy of Vladimir Putin

In international affairs, Putin had made increasingly critical public statements regarding the foreign policy of the United States and other Western countries. In February 2007, at the annual Munich Conference on Security Policy, he criticized what he called the United States' monopolistic dominance in global relations, and claimed that the United States displayed an "almost unconstrained hyper use of force in international relations". He said the result of it is that "no one feels safe! Because no one can feel that international law is like a stone wall that will protect them. Of course such a policy stimulates an arms race."[20][21]

Vladimir Putin meeting with American president Joe Biden, 2021.
Meeting with Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, 2016.

Putin proposed initiatives such as establishing international centers for the enrichment of uranium and prevention of deploying weapons in outer space.[20] In a January 2007 interview, Putin stated that Russia is in favor of a democratic multipolar world, and of strengthening the system of international law.[22]


Putin is often characterized as an autocrat by the Western media and politicians.[23][24] His relationship with former U.S. President George W. Bush, former and current Brazilian President Luis Inacio Lula da Silva, former Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez, former German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder, former French President Jacques Chirac, and former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi are reported to be personally friendly. Putin's relationship with Germany's former Chancellor, Angela Merkel, is reported to be "cooler" and "more business-like" than his partnership with Gerhard Schröder, who accepted a job with a Russian-led consortium after leaving office.[25]

Putin with Middle Eastern leaders.

During the Iraq disarmament crisis in 2002–2003, Putin opposed Washington's move to invade Iraq, without the benefit of a United Nations Security Council resolution explicitly authorizing the use of military force. After the official end of the war was announced, U.S. president George W. Bush asked the United Nations to lift sanctions on Iraq. Putin supported lifting of the sanctions in due course, arguing that the UN commission first be given a chance to complete its work on the search for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.[citation needed]

During the 2004 Ukrainian presidential election, Putin twice visited Ukraine before the election to show his support for Ukrainian Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych, who was widely seen as a pro-Kremlin candidate, and he congratulated him on his anticipated victory before the official election results had been in.[26][27] Putin's personal support for Yanukovych was criticized as unwarranted interference in the affairs of a sovereign state (See also The Orange revolution). Crises also developed in Russia's relations with Georgia and Moldova, both former Soviet republics accusing Moscow of supporting separatist entities in their territories.

In 2005, Putin and former German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder negotiated the construction of a major gas pipeline over the Baltic exclusively between Russia and Germany. Schröder also attended Putin's 53rd birthday celebration in Saint Petersburg the same year.[citation needed]

Putin and his homologue from China, Xi Jinping and Narendra Modi from India.

The end of 2006 brought strained relations between Russia and Britain, in the wake of the death of a former FSB officer in London by poisoning. On 20 July 2007, UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown expelled "four Russian envoys over Putin's refusal to extradite ex-KGB agent Andrei Lugovoi, wanted in the UK for the murder of fellow former spy Alexander Litvinenko in London."[28] The Russian constitution prohibits the extradition of Russian nationals to third countries. British Foreign Secretary David Miliband said that "this situation is not unique, and other countries have amended their constitutions, for example, to give effect to the European Arrest Warrant".[29]

When Litvinenko was dying from radiation poisoning, he accused Putin of directing the assassination, in a statement which was released shortly after his death by his friend Alex Goldfarb.[30] Critics have doubted that Litvinenko is the true author of the released statement.[31][32] When asked about the Litvinenko accusations, Putin said that a statement released posthumously of its author "naturally deserves no comment".[33]

The expulsions were seen as "the biggest rift since the countries expelled each other's diplomats in 1996 after a spying dispute."[28] In response to the situation, Putin stated "I think we will overcome this mini-crisis. Russian-British relations will develop normally. On both the Russian side and the British side, we are interested in the development of those relations."[28] Despite this, British Ambassador Tony Brenton was told by the Russian Foreign Ministry that UK diplomats would be given 10 days before they were expelled in response. The Russian government also announced that it would suspend issuing visas to UK officials, and froze cooperation on counterterrorism, in response to Britain suspending contacts with their Federal Security Service.[28]

Alexander Shokhin, president of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs, warned that British investors in Russia will "face greater scrutiny from tax and regulatory authorities. [And] They could also lose out in government tenders".[28] Some see the crisis as originating with Britain's decision to grant Putin's former patron, Russian billionaire Boris Berezovsky, political asylum in 2003.[28] Earlier in 2007, Berezovsky had called for the overthrow of Putin.[28]


Meeting with Raúl Castro from Cuba.

Putin took an active personal part in promoting the Act of Canonical Communion with the Moscow Patriarchate signed 17 May 2007, which restored relations between the Moscow-based Russian Orthodox Church and Russian Orthodox Church outside Russia after the 80-year schism.[34]

The Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), seen in Moscow as its traditional sphere of influence, became one of Putin's foreign policy priorities, as the EU and NATO have grown to encompass much of Central Europe and, more recently, the Baltic states.[citation needed]

In his annual address to the Federal Assembly on 26 April 2007, Putin announced plans to declare a moratorium on the observance of the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe by Russia until all NATO members ratified it and started observing its provisions, as Russia had been doing on a unilateral basis.[35] Putin argues that as new NATO members have not even signed the treaty so far, an imbalance in the presence of NATO and Russian armed forces in Europe creates a real threat, and an unpredictable situation for Russia.[35] NATO members said they would refuse to ratify the treaty, until Russia complied with its 1999 commitments made in Istanbul, whereby Russia should remove troops and military equipment from Moldova and Georgia. Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, was quoted as saying in response that "Russia has long since fulfilled all its Istanbul obligations relevant to CFE".[36]

Russia suspended its participation in the CFE on 11 December 2007.[37][38] On 12 December 2007, the United States officially stated that it "deeply regretted the Russian Federation's decision to 'suspend' implementation of its obligations under the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE)." State Department spokesman Sean McCormack, in a written statement, added that "Russia's conventional forces are the largest on the European continent, and its unilateral action damages this successful arms control regime."[39] NATO's primary concern arising from Russia's suspension is that Moscow could now accelerate its military presence in the Northern Caucasus.[40]

Putin with Latin American leaders.

The months following Putin's Munich speech[20] were marked by tension, and a surge in rhetoric on both sides of the Atlantic. As a result, Vladimir Putin stated at the anniversary of the Victory Day, "these threats are not becoming fewer, but are only transforming and changing their appearance. These new threats, just as under the Third Reich, show the same contempt for human life, and the same aspiration to establish an exclusive dictate over the world."[41] This was interpreted by some Russian and Western commentators as comparing the U.S. to Nazi Germany.[42]

On the eve of the 2007 33rd Summit of the G8 in Heiligendamm, American journalist Anne Applebaum, who is married to a Polish politician, wrote that "Whether by waging cyberwarfare on Estonia, threatening the gas supplies of Lithuania, or boycotting Georgian wine and Polish meat, he [Putin] has, over the past few years, made it clear that he intends to reassert Russian influence in the former communist states of Europe, whether those states want Russian influence or not. At the same time, he has also made it clear that he no longer sees Western nations as mere benign trading partners, but rather as Cold War-style threats."[42]

Meeting with European leaders, 2019

British academic Norman Stone in his article "No wonder they like Putin" compared Putin to General Charles de Gaulle.[43] Adi Ignatius argues that "Putin... is not a Stalin. There are no mass purges in Russia today, no broad climate of terror. But Putin is reconstituting a strong state, and anyone who stands in his way will pay for it".[44] Both Russian and American officials always denied the idea of a new Cold War. So, the US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates said yet on the Munich Conference: "We all face many common problems and challenges that must be addressed in partnership with other countries, including Russia.... One Cold War was quite enough."[45] Vladimir Putin said prior to 33rd G8 Summit, on 4 June 2007: "we do not want confrontation; we want to engage in dialogue. However, we want a dialogue that acknowledges the equality of both parties' interests."[46]

Putin publicly opposed to a U.S. missile shield in Europe, presented President George W. Bush with a counterproposal on 7 June 2007 of sharing the use of the Soviet-era radar system in Azerbaijan, rather than building a new system in Poland and the Czech Republic. Putin expressed readiness to modernize the Gabala radar station, which has been in operation since 1986. Putin proposed it would not be necessary to place interceptor missiles in Poland then, but interceptors could be placed in NATO member Turkey or Iraq. Putin suggested equal involvement of interested European countries in the project.[47]

In a 4 June 2007 interview with journalists of G8 countries, when answering the question of whether Russian nuclear forces may be focused on European targets in case "the United States continues building a strategic shield in Poland and the Czech Republic", Putin admitted that "if part of the United States' nuclear capability is situated in Europe and that our military experts consider that they represent a potential threat then we will have to take appropriate retaliatory steps. What steps? Of course we must have new targets in Europe."[46][48]

SCO and CSTO members

Following the 2007 Peace Mission military exercises jointly conducted by the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) member states, Putin announced on 17 August 2007, that the resumption on a permanent basis of long-distance patrol flights of Russia's strategic bombers that were suspended in 1992.[49] The announcement made during the SCO summit in the light of joint Russian-Chinese military exercises, first-ever in history to be held on Russian territory,[50] makes some believe that Putin is inclined to set up an anti-NATO bloc, or the Asian version of OPEC.[51]

When presented with the suggestion that "Western observers are already likening the SCO to a military organisation that would stand in opposition to NATO", Putin answered that "this kind of comparison is inappropriate in both form and substance".[49] Russian Chief of the General Staff Yury Baluyevsky was quoted as saying that "there should be no talk of creating a military or political alliance or union of any kind, because this would contradict the founding principles of SCO".[50]

The resumption of long-distance flights of Russia's strategic bombers was followed by the announcement by Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov during his meeting with Putin on 5 December 2007, that 11 ships, including the aircraft carrier Kuznetsov, would take part in the first major navy sortie into the Mediterranean since Soviet times.[52] The sortie was to be backed up by 47 aircraft, including strategic bombers.[53] According to Serdyukov, this is an effort to resume regular Russian naval patrols on the world's oceans, the view that is also supported by Russian media.[54] The military analyst from Novaya Gazeta Pavel Felgenhauer believes that the accident-prone Kuznetsov is scarcely seaworthy, and is more of a menace to her crew than any putative enemy.[55]

In September 2007, Putin visited Indonesia, and in doing so, became the first Russian leader to visit the country in more than 50 years.[56] In the same month, Putin also attended the APEC meeting held in Sydney, Australia, where he met with Australian Prime Minister John Howard, and signed a uranium trade deal. This was the first visit of a Russian president to Australia.

On 16 October 2007, Putin visited Tehran, Iran to participate in the Second Caspian Summit,[57] where he met with Iranian leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.[58] Other participants were leaders of Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, and Turkmenistan.[59] This is the first visit of a leader from the Kremlin to Iran, since Joseph Stalin's participation in the Tehran Conference in 1943.[60][61] At a press conference after the summit, Putin stated that "all our (Caspian) states have the right to develop their peaceful nuclear programmes without any restrictions".[62] During the summit, it was also agreed that its participants, under no circumstances, would let any third-party state use their territory as a base for aggression or military action against any other participant.[57]

On 26 October 2007, at a press conference following the 20th Russia-EU Summit in Portugal, Putin proposed to create a Russian-European Institute for Freedom and Democracy, headquartered either in Brussels, or in one of the European capitals, and added that "we are ready to supply funds for financing it, just as Europe covers the costs of projects in Russia".[63] This newly proposed institution is expected to monitor human rights violations in Europe, and contribute to development of European democracy.[64]

Russian President Vladimir Putin and ex-U.S. President George W. Bush failed to resolve their differences over U.S. plans for the planned missile defense system based in Poland and the Czech Republic, on their meeting in the Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi on 6 April 2008. Putin made clear that he did not agree with the decision to establish sites in the Eastern European countries, but said they had agreed a "strategic framework" to guide future U.S.-Russian relations, in which Russia and the U.S. said they recognized that the era in which each had considered the other to be a "strategic threat or enemy" was over.[65]

Putin expressed cautious optimism that the two sides could find a way to cooperate over missile defense, and described his eight-year relationship as Russian president with Bush as "mostly positive". The summit was the final meeting between Bush and Putin as presidents and follows both leaders' attendance at last the NATO summit in Romania 2 April 2008 – 4 April 2008. That summit also highlighted differences between Washington and Moscow, over U.S.-backed proposals to extend the military alliance to include the former Soviet republics of Ukraine and Georgia. Russia opposes the proposed expansion, fearing it will reduce its own influence over its neighbours.[65]

Fareed Zakaria suggests that the 2008 South Ossetia War turned out to be a diplomatic disaster for Russia. He suggests that it was a major strategic blunder, turning neighboring nations such as Ukraine to embrace the United States and other Western nations more.[66] George Friedman, founder and CEO of private intelligence agency Stratfor, takes an opposite view; arguing that both the war and Russian foreign policy have been successful in expanding Russia's influence.[67]


The mid-2010s marked a dramatic downturn in Russian relations with the West, with some even considering it the start of a new Cold War.[68] The United States and Russia back opposing sides in the Syrian Civil War, and Washington regarded Moscow as obstructionist regarding its support for the Bashar al-Assad government.[69]

In 2013, for the first time since 1960, the United States cancelled a summit with Russia, after the latter granted asylum to Edward Snowden.[70]

The greatest increase in tensions, however, came during the Ukraine crisis that began in 2014, which saw the Crimean peninsula annexed by Russia.[71] Russia also inflamed a separatist uprising in the Donbas region.[72] The United States responded to these events by putting forth sanctions against Russia, and most European countries followed suit, worrying about Russian interference in the affairs of central and Eastern Europe.[citation needed]

October 2015 saw Russia, after years of supporting the Syrian government indirectly, directly intervene in the conflict, turning the tide in favor of the Assad regime. Russia's relations with Turkey, already strained over its support for the Assad regime, deteriorated further during this period, especially after the Turkish Air Force shot down a Russian jet fighter on 24 November 2015. In 2015, Russia also formed the Eurasian Economic Union with Armenia, Kazakhstan, and Belarus.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, Chinese President Xi Jinping, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other leaders at the Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit in Uzbekistan on 16 September 2022

The Russian government disapproves the expansion of NATO into Eastern Europe, claiming that Western leaders promised that NATO would not expand beyond its 1990s borders.[73]

Current issues

See also: Russia–United States relations, Sino-Russian relations since 1991, Russian military intervention in the Syrian Civil War, Foreign policy of Vladimir Putin, and Foreign relations of Russia since the Russian invasion of Ukraine

   Countries on Russia's "Unfriendly Countries List". Countries and territories on the list imposed sanctions on Russia following the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022.[74]

For decades, the dispute between Japan and Russia over the ownership of the Kuril Islands has hindered closer cooperation between the two countries. However, since 2017, high level talks involving Prime Minister Shinzō Abe have been ongoing in an attempt to resolve the situation.[75]

Russia's power on the international stage depends in large part on its revenue from fossil fuel exports. If the world completes a transition to renewable energy, and international demand for Russian oil, gas, and coal resources is dramatically reduced, so may Russia's international power be. Although Russian oil and gas exports receive more attention, the country is also one of the world's three largest coal exporters and this industry is important for some Russian towns and provinces.[76] Russia is ranked 148 out of 156 countries in the index of Geopolitical Gains and Losses after energy transition (GeGaLo).[77]

Russia lacks strong alliances.[78] The Collective Security Treaty Organization is an attempt to develop a successor alliance to the Warsaw Pact but it is comparatively weak.[78] Russia participates in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, but the SCO is a multilateral cooperation group rather than an alliance and China plays the leading role in the organization.[78]

When Russia invaded Ukraine in 2022, its foreign policy underwent significant change after the UN resolution of 2 March 2022 deploring Russia's invasion of Ukraine and demanded a full withdrawal of Russian forces, supported by 141 countries and over 600 Russian diplomats being declared persona non grata in 2022.[79]

Russia attempted to solidify its alliances in Africa, Asia and South America. Historically, the former Soviet Union and later the Russian Federation had good relations with modern states in those regions, being on the side of oppressed populations, such as during Apartheid in South Africa, and opposing imperialism worldwide. Later in 2022, many African and South American States abstained to vote against Russia in the UN security council for its military involvements in Ukraine. Russia's influence in Africa and South America is expanding, particularly in the areas of mining and security services. Most African and South American countries have a keen interest in cheap fossil energy, and have no sanctions in place against Russian entities.[80][81]

Eurasianist Foreign Policy Doctrine

In 2023, Russia unveiled a Eurasianist, anti-Western foreign policy strategy in a document titled "The Concept of the Foreign Policy of the Russian Federation" approved by Vladimir Putin. The document defines Russia as a "unique country-civilization and a vast Eurasian and Euro-Pacific power" that seeks to create a "Greater Eurasian Partnership" by pursuing close relations with China, India, countries of the Islamic World and rest of the Global South (Latin America and Southern Africa). The policy identifies United States and other Anglo-Saxon countries as "the main inspirer, organizer and executor of the aggressive anti-Russian policy of the collective West" and seeks the end of American dominance in the international scene. The document also adopts a neo-Soviet posture, positioning Russia as the successor state of USSR and calls for spreading "accurate information" about the "decisive contribution of the Soviet Union" in shaping the post-WWII international order and the United Nations.[82][83][84]

Diplomatic relations

List of countries which Russia maintains diplomatic relations with:

# Country Date[85]
1  Turkey 31 August 1492[86]
2  Denmark 8 November 1493[87]
3  Iran 1521[88]
4  United Kingdom 20 April 1566[89]
5  Netherlands 1613[90]
6  France November 1615[91]
7  Sweden 15 March 1722[92]
8  Portugal 24 October 1779[93]
9  United States 14 July 1809[94]
10  Spain 20 July 1812[95]
11   Switzerland 6 March 1814[96]
12  Brazil 3 October 1828[97]
13  Serbia 23 February 1838[98]
14  Greece 5 September 1838[99]
15  Belgium 1853[100]
16  Japan 7 February 1855[101]
17  Uruguay 9 September 1857[102]
18  Costa Rica 1872[103]
19  Romania 24 October 1878[104]
20  Bulgaria 7 July 1879[105]
21  Mexico 11 December 1890[106]
22  Luxembourg 7 March 1891[107]
23  Thailand 3 July 1897[108]
24  Bolivia 9 August 1898[109]
25  Panama 21 November 1903[110]
26  Norway 7 November 1905[111]
27  Afghanistan 27 May 1919
28  Finland 31 December 1920[112]
29  Italy 7 February 1921
30  Poland 7 April 1921[113]
31  Mongolia 5 November 1921
32  Austria 25 February 1924
33  Albania 4 July 1924
34  Saudi Arabia 16 February 1926
35  Hungary 4 February 1934
36  Czech Republic 9 June 1934
37  Colombia 25 June 1935[114]
38  Iraq 16 May 1941
39  Canada 12 June 1942
40  Australia 10 October 1942
41  Ethiopia 21 April 1943
42  Egypt 26 August 1943[115]
43  Iceland 4 October 1943
44  New Zealand 13 April 1944
45  Syria 21 July 1944
46  Lebanon 31 July 1944
47  Dominican Republic 14 March 1945
48  Venezuela 14 March 1945
49  Guatemala 19 April 1945
50  Argentina 6 June 1946
51  India 14 April 1947
52  Myanmar 18 February 1948
53  Pakistan 1 May 1948
54  Israel 15 May 1948
55  North Korea 12 October 1948
56  China 2 October 1949
57  Germany 15 October 1949
58  Indonesia 25 January 1950
59  Vietnam 30 January 1950
60  Libya 25 September 1955
61  Yemen 31 October 1955
62  Sudan 3 January 1956
63  Liberia 11 January 1956
64  Tunisia 11 June 1956
65    Nepal 20 July 1956
66  Cambodia 6 November 1956[116]
67  Sri Lanka 19 February 1957[117]
68  Ghana 15 January 1958
69  Morocco 29 August 1958
70  Guinea 3 October 1958
71  Togo 1 May 1960
72  Cuba 8 May 1960
73  Democratic Republic of the Congo 29 June 1960
74  Republic of the Congo 7 July 1960
75  Somalia 30 September 1960
76  Nigeria 1 October 1960
77  Laos 7 October 1960
78  Mali 8 October 1960
79  Cyprus 18 November 1960
80  Central African Republic 15 December 1960
81  Sierra Leone 26 April 1961
82  Tanzania 10 December 1961
83  Algeria 19 March 1962
84  Benin 4 June 1962
85  Senegal 14 June 1962
86  Burundi 1 October 1962
87  Uganda 11 October 1962
88  Kuwait 11 March 1963
89  Jordan 20 August 1963
90  Rwanda 17 October 1963
91  Kenya 14 December 1963
92  Cameroon 18 February 1964
93  Mauritania 12 July 1964
94  Zambia 2 October 1964
95  Chad 24 November 1964
96  Gambia 17 July 1965
97  Maldives 21 September 1966
98  Ivory Coast 23 January 1967
99  Burkina Faso 18 February 1967
100  Malaysia 3 April 1967
101  Malta 26 July 1967
102  Mauritius 17 March 1968
103  Singapore 1 June 1968
104  Equatorial Guinea 12 December 1968
105  Peru 1 February 1969
106  Ecuador 12 November 1969
107  Botswana 17 March 1970[118]
108  Guyana 17 December 1970
109  United Arab Emirates 8 December 1971
110  Bangladesh 25 January 1972
111  Niger 17 February 1972
112  Madagascar 29 September 1972
113  Ireland 29 September 1973
114  Guinea-Bissau 30 September 1973
115  Gabon 15 October 1973
116  Fiji 30 January 1974[119]
117  Trinidad and Tobago 6 June 1974
 State of Palestine 1974[120]
118  Jamaica 12 March 1975
119  Mozambique 28 June 1975
120  São Tomé and Príncipe 9 August 1975
121  Tonga 14 October 1975
122  Cape Verde 25 November 1975
123  Comoros 6 January 1976
124  Papua New Guinea 19 May 1976
125  Philippines 2 June 1976
126  Seychelles 30 June 1976
127  Angola 8 October 1976[121]
128  Suriname 2 November 1976[122]
129  Samoa 2 July 1977
130  Djibouti 5 April 1978
131  Grenada 7 September 1979[123]
132  Nicaragua 13 September 1979[124]
133  Lesotho 1 February 1980
134  Zimbabwe 20 February 1981[105]
135  Oman 26 September 1985[125]
136  Vanuatu 30 June 1986[126]
137  Nauru 30 December 1987[127]
138  Qatar 1 August 1988[128]
139  Antigua and Barbuda 5 January 1990[103]
140  Namibia 21 March 1990[129]
141  Kiribati 5 September 1990[130]
142  Bahrain 29 September 1990[131]
143  Honduras 30 September 1990[103]
144  South Korea 30 September 1990[132]
145  Belize 25 June 1991[103]
146  Brunei 1 October 1991[103]
147  Latvia 4 October 1991[133]
148  Lithuania 4 October 1991[134]
149  Estonia 24 October 1991[135]
150  Chile 26 December 1991[136]
 Ukraine (broken) 14 February 1992
151  South Africa 28 February 1992[137]
152  Kyrgyzstan 20 March 1992[138]
153  Uzbekistan 20 March 1992[139]
154  Armenia 4 April 1992[140]
155  Azerbaijan 4 April 1992[141]
156  Moldova 6 April 1992[142]
157  Tajikistan 8 April 1992[143]
158  Turkmenistan 8 April 1992[144]
159  Paraguay 14 May 1992[145]
160  Croatia 25 May 1992[146]
161  Slovenia 25 May 1992[147]
162  El Salvador 3 June 1992[148]
163  Belarus 25 June 1992[149]
 Georgia (broken) 1 July 1992[150]
164  Marshall Islands 6 August 1992[103]
165  Kazakhstan 22 October 1992[151]
166  Slovakia 1 January 1993[152]
167  Barbados 29 January 1993[153]
168  Eritrea 24 May 1993[154]
169  Malawi 2 November 1993[103]
170  San Marino 30 September 1993[155]
171  North Macedonia 31 December 1993[156]
172  Liechtenstein 30 January 1994[157]
173  Dominica 19 May 1995[158]
174  Andorra 13 June 1995[159]
175  Haiti 2 June 1996[103]
176  Bosnia and Herzegovina 26 December 1996[160]
 Federated States of Micronesia (broken) 9 March 1999[161]
177  Eswatini 19 October 1999[162]
178  East Timor 20 May 2002[163]
179  Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 17 September 2002[164]
180  Saint Kitts and Nevis 22 September 2003[121]
181  Bahamas 14 January 2004[103]
182  Saint Lucia 19 April 2004[103]
183  Montenegro 26 June 2006[165]
184  Palau 28 November 2006[103]
185  Monaco 31 May 2007[166]
 Abkhazia 9 September 2008[167]
 South Ossetia 9 September 2008[167]
 Holy See 9 December 2009[168]
186  South Sudan 22 August 2011[169]
187  Tuvalu 25 October 2011[170]

Bilateral relations


Country Formal relations began Notes
 Algeria See Algeria–Russia relations

Algeria still consistent being Russia main allies in Africa within Framework Groups of Friends of Defender UN Charter and share similar visions on multipolarity. In recently years, Algeria being the most important trading and economic partners for Russia, alongside with Egypt, Morocco, and South Africa.

 Angola See Angola–Russia relations or Angola–Soviet Union relations

Russia has an embassy in Luanda. Angola has an embassy in Moscow and an honorary consulate in Saint Petersburg. Angola and the precursor to Russia, the Soviet Union, established relations upon Angola's independence.

 Benin See Benin–Russia relations

Russia has an embassy in Cotonou, and Benin has an embassy in Moscow.[171]

 Botswana 6 March 1970 See Botswana–Russia relations

Botswana and the Soviet Union initiated diplomatic relations on 6 March 1970. Despite its pro-Western orientation, Botswana participated in the 1980 Summer Olympics. The present-day relations between the two countries are described as friendly and long standing. In March, the two countries also celebrated the 35th anniversary of establishing diplomatic relations. According to the minister of Foreign Affairs, Russia was one of the first countries to establish full diplomatic relations with Botswana.[172]

Trade and economic cooperation between Russia and Botswana are stipulated by the Trade Agreement of 1987 and the Agreement on Economic and Technical Cooperation of 1988. The Government of the Russian Federation and the Government of the Republic of Botswana signed the Agreement on Cultural, Scientific and Educational Cooperation in September 1999. Russia and Botswana have had fruitful cooperation in a variety of fields, particularly in human resource development. And Russia is still offering more scholarship in key sectors such as health, which is currently experiencing a critical shortage of manpower. Botswana also is one of the countries where Russian citizens do not require a visa.[173] Russia has an embassy in Gaborone, while Botswana covers Russia from its embassy in Stockholm (Sweden) and an honorary consulate in Moscow.

 Burkina Faso 18 February 1967 See Burkina Faso – Russia relations

Diplomatic relations between Burkina Faso and the Soviet Union were established for the first time on 18 February 1967. After the breakup of the Soviet Union, Burkina Faso recognized Russia as the USSR's successor. However financial reasons has shut the embassies between the two nations. In 1992, the embassy of the Russian Federation in Ouagadougou was closed, and in 1996, the embassy of Burkina Faso in Moscow was closed. While, after Ibrahim Traore rise in power, due Russia-Africa Summit 2023, Russia decided to reopen their embassy in Ouagadougou.

 Burundi See Burundi–Russia relations

Russia has an embassy in Bujumbura. Burundi has an embassy in Moscow. Relations improved when Burundian relations with the west deteriorated.[174] In recent years, Russia and Burundi consistently remains similar visions and collaboration in international arena, including UN framework.

 Cameroon See Cameroon–Russia relations

Russia has an embassy in Yaoundé, and Cameroon has an embassy in Moscow. While, relations between two countries remains strong and deepen with high level trust.

 Cape Verde

Russia is represented in Cape-Verde by its embassy in Praia.[175][176]

  • Chad has an embassy in Moscow.
  • Russia has an embassy in N'Djamena.
 Central African Republic See Central African Republic–Russia relations

In March 2018, Russia agreed to provide free military aid to the Central African Republic, sending small arms, ammunition, and 175 instructors to train the Central African Armed Forces.[177] The advisers are believed to be members of the Wagner Group.[178]

 Democratic Republic of the Congo See Democratic Republic of the Congo–Russia relations
 Egypt 26 August 1943 See Egypt–Russia relations

Egypt enjoyed as the most important allies in many sphere, and major trade partners for Russia in recent years.

 Eswatini See Eswatini–Russia relations
 Ethiopia 1943-4-21 See Ethiopia–Russia relations
 Eritrea 1943-4-21 See Eritrea–Russia relations
 Gambia 1965-07-17 See Gambia–Russia relations

Both countries have established diplomatic relations on 17 July 1965. Diplomatic relations were later established once again after the breakup of the Soviet Union. The Gambia has an embassy in Moscow. Russia is represented in the Gambia through its embassy in Dakar (Senegal).

 Ghana See Ghana–Russia relations
Embassy of Ghana in Moscow

Russia has an embassy in Accra, and Ghana has an embassy in Moscow.

 Guinea-Bissau See Guinea-Bissau–Russia relations

Guinea-Bissau has an embassy in Moscow, and Russia has an embassy in Bissau.

 Ivory Coast See Ivory Coast–Russia relations

Russia works on UN missions to help the people of Ivory Coast. The help is sometimes done from the Russian embassy in Abidjan, but is also done from the embassy in Accra, Ghana. From these point of view, Russia regarded the outcome of the extraordinary summit held in Dakar, Senegal, of the Economic Community for West African States.

 Kenya See Kenya–Russia relations
  • Russia has an embassy in Nairobi.
  • Kenya has an embassy in Moscow.

Liberia and Russia renewed bilateral relations in March 2010 and cited a recent exploration of mine by a Russian company as a sign of future trade relations.[179]


Russia sharply criticised the NATO-led military intervention in the Libyan civil war, though it chose not to use its veto power on the United Nations Security Council to block it. On 27 May 2011, Russian President Dmitri Medvedev said that although Moscow opposed the military operations, it believed Gaddafi should leave power.[180]

In early June 2011, Russian envoy Mikhail Margelov was received in Benghazi, the de facto headquarters of the Libyan opposition. Margelov's stated objective was to broker a truce between anti-Gaddafi forces and the Gaddafi-led government.[181] He recognized the council as Libya's sole legitimate representative, which it did on 1 September 2011.[182]

 Madagascar See Madagascar–Russia relations

The establishment of diplomatic relations between Madagascar and the Soviet Union started on 29 September 1972.

During the 2009 Malagasy political crisis, Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov stated that Russia is "concerned by the increased frequency of attempts on the African continent to resort to non-constitutional methods of solving internal political problems." He went on to say that, in addition to increasing economic and social problems, the use of force is of concern and runs counter to democratic principles, whilst affirming Russia's support of the African Union's position.[183]

 Mali See Mali–Russia relations

Russia has an embassy in Bamako, and Mali has an embassy in Moscow.

 Mauritania See Mauritania–Russia relations

Russia has an embassy in Nouakchott, and Mauritania has an embassy in Moscow.

 Mauritius 17 March 1968 See Mauritius–Russia relations

The Soviet Union and Mauritius established diplomatic relations on 17 March 1968.[186] Russia has an embassy in Port Louis, and Mauritius has an embassy in Moscow, which was opened in July 2003.[187]

 Morocco See Morocco–Russia relations

Russia has an embassy in Rabat, and a consular office in Casablanca. Morocco is represented in Russia by its embassy to Moscow. President Vladimir Putin had paid a visit to Morocco in September 2006 in order to boost economic and military ties between Russia and Morocco.

 Mozambique 25 June 1975 See Mozambique–Russia relations

Mozambique-Russia relations date back to the 1960s, when Russia began to support the struggle of Mozambique's Marxist-oriented FRELIMO party against Portuguese colonialism. Most leaders of the FRELIMO were trained in Moscow. Diplomatic relations were formally established on 25 June 1975, soon after Mozambique gained its independence from Portugal. In June 2007, both Russia and Mozambique signed an agreement on economic cooperation.[188] Russia has an embassy in Maputo while Mozambique has an embassy in Moscow.

 Namibia See Namibia–Russia relations

Namibia has an embassy to Russia in Moscow and Russia has an embassy to Namibia in Windhoek. Relations between Namibia and Russia were considered "excellent" in 2006 by then-Namibian Minister of Education Nangolo Mbumba, while Russia expressed a desire for even stronger relations, particularly in the economic field. Also in 2006, the Namibia-Russia Intergovernmental Commission on Trade and Economic Cooperation was officially opened during a visit by Russian Natural Resources Minister Yuri Trutnev to Windhoek. During said visit, the Minister said Russia was interested in investing in oil, hydro-electric power and tourism.[189] In 2007, Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Fradkov held discussions with Namibian Deputy Prime Minister Nahas Angula and President Hifikepunye Pohamba in regards to the possibility of developing Namibia's significant uranium deposits with an aim towards creating a nuclear power plant in the country.[190] In 2008, Trutnev returned to Namibia, this time to Swakopmund, to meet at the third annual Intergovernmental Commission. Top foreign ministry official Marco Hausiku and his deputy Lempy Lucas represented Namibia in discussions with Trutnev.[191]

 Nigeria See Nigeria–Russia relations
  • Nigeria has an embassy in Moscow.
  • Russia has an embassy in Abuja and a consulate-general in Lagos.
 Senegal 14 June 1962 See Russia–Senegal relations

Russia has an embassy in Dakar and Senegal has an embassy in Moscow. The Soviet Union established diplomatic relations with Senegal on 14 June 1962.

 Seychelles 1976-06-30 See Russia–Seychelles relations

Diplomatic relations between Seychelles and the Soviet Union were established on 30 June 1976, a day after the island nation gained its independence from the United Kingdom.[192] Russia has an embassy in Victoria.[193] Seychelles is represented in Russia through its embassy in Paris (France) and an honorary consulate in Saint Petersburg.

 South Africa 1942 See Russia–South Africa relations
 South Sudan 22 August 2011[197][198][199] See Russia–South Sudan relations
 Sudan See Russia–Sudan relations

Russia has an embassy in Khartoum and Sudan has an embassy in Moscow.

For decades, Russia and Sudan have maintained a strong economic and politically strategic partnership. Due to solidarity with both the United States and with the Soviet Union and with the allies of the two nations, Sudan declared neutrality and instead chose membership in the Non-Aligned Movement throughout the Cold War. Russo-Sudanese relations were minorly damaged when, in 1971 members of the Sudanese Communist Party attempted to assassinate then-president Gaafar Nimeiry, and Nimeiry pegged the blame on the USSR, thus enhancing Sudanese relations with the West, and were damaged again when Sudan supported the Mujahadeen in Afghanistan when the USSR invaded in 1979. Due to a common enemy, diplomatic cooperation between the two countries dramatically got back on track during the late 1990s and early 2000s, when Vladimir Putin was elected the President, and then the Prime Minister of Russia, and along with Chinese leader Hu Jintao opposed UN Peacekeepers in Darfur. Russia strongly supports Sudan's territorial integrity and opposes the creation of an independent Darfurian state. Also, Russia is Sudan's strongest investment partner in Europe and political ally in Europe, and Russia has repeatedly and significantly regarded Sudan as an important global ally in the African continent. For decades there have been Sudanese collegians studying in Russian universities.

 Tanzania 1961-01-11 See Russia–Tanzania relations

Both countries have signed diplomatic missions on 11 December 1961 Russia has an embassy in Dar es Salaam, and Tanzania has an embassy in Moscow.[200]

 Tunisia 1956 See Russia–Tunisia relations

Russia has an embassy in Tunis, and Tunisia has an embassy in Moscow.

 Uganda See Russia – Uganda relations

Russia has an embassy in Kampala and Uganda has an embassy in Moscow.

 Zambia See Russia–Zambia relations
  • Start date: 1964
  • Russia has an embassy in Lusaka.
  • Zambia is represented in Russia by its embassy in Moscow.
 Zimbabwe 1981-02-18 See Russia–Zimbabwe relations

Russia-Zimbabwe relations date back to January 1979, during the Rhodesian Bush War. The Soviet Union supported Joshua Nkomo's Zimbabwe African People's Union, and supplied them with arms; Robert Mugabe's attempts to gain Soviet support for his Zimbabwe African National Union were rebuffed, leading him to enter into relations with Soviet rival Beijing. After the end of the white regime in Zimbabwe, Robert Mugabe had strengthened his relations with both Beijing and Moscow as a result of intense western pressure on him. Russia maintains strong economic and political ties with Zimbabwe and both countries had vetoed the UN resolution imposing UN sanctions on Zimbabwe which was proposed by both the US and the UK on 12 July 2008.


Country Formal relations began Notes
 Argentina 1885-10-22 See Argentina–Russia relations
 Barbados 1993-01-29

The Russian Federation and Barbados established formal diplomatic relations on 29 January 1993.[202][203] In 2018 both nations celebrated 25 years of diplomatic ties and pledged closer collaboration.[204][205][206] The two nations also discussed cultural exchanges and Russia working with Barbados' light oil and gas industry.[207][208] And possible scholarships to Russian schools.[209] In 2022 the Russian Foreign Minister met his counterpart in Barbados to discuss current relations and explored a future agenda with the nation including among other things the conclusion of a visa waiver agreement between both nations.[210]

 Belize 25 June 1991

Both countries have established diplomatic relations on 25 June 1991. Belize immediately recognized Russia as the USSR's successor after the breakup of the Soviet Union.

Russia is represented in Belize through its embassy in Mexico City and an honorary consulate in Belize City.

 Bolivia See Bolivia–Russia relations

With Bolivia the focus on relations with Russia is mainly economic, as opposed to political and strategic, as an agreement to invest in Bolivia's natural gas fields shows. It is seen to "help Latin America...[as it] expands Latin America's economic opportunities, diversifies its relationships...that's healthy."[212]

2008 saw, as a first step to re-establish ties with Russia, the Bolivian government had plans to purchase a small batch of helicopters. Ambassador Leonid Golubev told The Associated Press that he would like to see Russia's ties to Bolivia one day "approach the level" of its growing partnership with Venezuela.[213] [214]

In 2009 amid improving relations between the two countries Bolivia and Russia signed various agreements pertaining to energy and military ties, mining activities and illegal drug eradication. [213][215]

  • Bolivia has an embassy in Moscow.
  • Russia has an embassy in La Paz.
 Brazil 3 October 1828 See Brazil–Russia relations

Brazil–Russia relations have seen a significant improvement in recent years, characterized by an increasing commercial trade and cooperation in military and technology segments. Today, Brazil shares an important alliance with the Russian Federation, with partnerships in areas such as space and military technologies, and telecommunications.

 Canada 1942-06-12 See Canada–Russia relations

Canada and Russia benefit from extensive cooperation on trade and investment, energy, democratic development and governance, security and counter-terrorism, northern issues, and cultural and academic exchanges.

  • Canada has an embassy in Moscow.
  • Russia has an embassy in Ottawa and consulates-general in Montreal and Toronto.
 Chile 1944-12-11 See Chile–Russia relations
 Colombia 1935 See Colombia–Russia relations
  • Colombia has an embassy in Moscow.
  • Russia has an embassy in Bogotá.
 Costa Rica See Costa Rica–Russia relations

Costa Rica has an embassy in Moscow. Russia has an embassy in San José.[216] Holders of a Russian passport need a visa authorized by Costa Rica, or alternatively Costa Rican authorities will accept Russian nationals with a visa stamp for the European Union, Canada, USA, South Korea, or Japan valid for 90 days after arrival; with a tourist visa, Russians can stay in Costa Rica for a maximum of 90 days.[217] In order to get a tourist visa, the person needs to apply for it in the closest Costa Rican embassy to where the person is living.[citation needed] The person must have a valid passport and either have an invitation letter or a bank statement with enough money to survive the length of the stay in Costa Rica, plus proof of onward travel (ticket to exit Costa Rica & legal ability to travel to the destination stated on the ticket). Holders of a Costa Rican passport also need a visa from Russian authorities.

 Cuba See Cuba–Russia relations or Cuba–Soviet Union relations

Relations between the two countries suffered somewhat during the Boris Yeltsin administration, as Cuba was forced to look for new major allies, such as China, after the dissolution of the Soviet Union. Relations improved when Vladimir Putin was elected as the new Russian President. Putin, and later Dmitry Medvedev, emphasized re-establishing strong relations with old Soviet allies. In 2008, Medvedev visited Havana and Raúl Castro made a week-long trip to Moscow. In that same year the two governments signed multiple economic agreements and Russia sent tons of humanitarian aid to Cuba. Cuba, meanwhile, gave staunch political support for Russia during the 2008 South Ossetia war. Relations between the two nations are currently at a post-Soviet high, and talks about potentially re-establishing a Russian military presence in Cuba are even beginning to surface.

 Dominica 1995

Dominica and Russia have established diplomatic relations on 19 May 1995.[218] In April 2018, Dominica appointed a resident ambassador to Russia.[219]

 Ecuador See Ecuador–Russia relations

Ecuador has an embassy in Moscow.[220] Russia has an embassy in Quito.[221]


During the New Jewel Movement, the Soviet Union tried to make the island of Grenada function as a Soviet base, and also by getting supplies from Cuba. In October 1983, during the U.S. invasion of Grenada, U.S. President Ronald Reagan maintained that US Marines arrived on the island of Grenada, which was considered a Soviet-Cuban ally that would export communist revolution throughout the Caribbean. In November, at a joint hearing of Congressional Subcommittee, it was told that Grenada could be used as a staging area for subversion of the nearby countries, for intersection of shipping lanes, and for the transit of troops and supplies from Cuba to Africa, and from Eastern Europe and Libya to Central America. In December, the State Department published a preliminary report on Grenada, in which it was claimed as an "Island of Soviet Internationalism". When the US Marines landed on the island, they discovered a large amount of documents, which included agreements between the Soviet Government, and the New Jewel Movement, recorded minutes of the Committee meetings, and reports from the Grenadian embassy in Moscow.[222] Diplomatic relations between Grenada and the Soviet Union were severed in 1983 by the Governor General of Grenada. Eventually in 2002, Grenada re-established diplomatic relations with the newly formed Russian Federation.[223]

 Guyana 17 December 1970 See Guyana–Russia relations
  • Both countries established diplomatic relations on 17 December 1970.
  • Guyana is represented in Russia by its High Commission in London, United Kingdom.
  • Russia is represented in Guyana by its embassy in Georgetown.
 Mexico 1 December 1890 See Mexico–Russia relations
  • Mexico has an embassy in Moscow.
  • Russia has an embassy in Mexico City.
 Nicaragua December 1944 See Nicaragua–Russia relations

Both countries signed diplomatic missions on 18 October 1979, a few months after the Sandinista revolution.[224] President Vladimir Putin visited Nicaragua on 12 July 2014.

  • Nicaragua has an embassy in Moscow.
  • Russia has an embassy in Managua.
 Panama 21 November 1903[225][226] See Panama–Russia relations
  • Panama has an embassy in Moscow.[227]
  • Russia has an embassy in Panama city.[228]
 Paraguay 14 May 1992 See Paraguay–Russia relations

The nations have begun discussing cooperation in the areas of agriculture, fishing, shipbuilding, education, along with trade. In October 2013, the Surinamese foreign minister, Yldiz Pollack-Beighle visited Moscow for talks on concluding military and joint law enforcement training.[230]

 Trinidad and Tobago 6 June 1974 See Russia–Trinidad and Tobago relations

Both countries have signed diplomatic missions on 6 June 1974. Russia is represented in Trinidad and Tobago through a non-resident embassy in Georgetown (Guyana). Both countries have interests with each other since the Soviet Union. In August 1992, Trinidad recognized Russia as the USSR's successor. In 2004, Sergey Lavrov and Knowlson Gift signed the protocol on the political consultations between the two Ministries. In April 2005 the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation and the Chamber of Industry and Commerce of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago signed the cooperation agreement.[231] In 2004, the Russian Cossack folk dance had nine concerts in Port of Spain, San Fernando, Couva, and Tobago.

 United States See Russia–United States relations
 Uruguay See Russia–Uruguay relations

Russia has an embassy in Montevideo and Uruguay has an embassy in Moscow.[232] Russia is looking for cooperation with Uruguay in the field of nuclear energy, the Russian ambassador to Latin America said: "Our countries could maintain cooperation in the sphere of nuclear energy although Uruguay's legislation bans the use of nuclear energy". The diplomat said Uruguayan officials had shown interest in a floating nuclear power plant, when the project's presentation took place at the Russian Embassy recently. The first floating plant will have capacity of 70 MW of electricity, and about 300 MW of thermal power. The cost of the first plant is estimated at US$400 million, but could later be reduced to $240 million. This year marks the 150th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Russia and Uruguay.

 Venezuela See Russia–Venezuela relations
  • Russia has an embassy in Caracas.
  • Venezuela has an embassy in Moscow.


Country Formal relations began Notes
 Afghanistan See Afghanistan–Russia relations
Hamid Karzai sitting with Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev

Afghanistan and Russia have shared a highly varied relationship from the mid-19th century to the modern day. For decades, Russia and Britain struggled for influence in Afghanistan, strategically positioned between their two empires, in what became known as "The Great Game". Following the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution, the new Soviet Union established more cordial relations with Afghanistan, and in 1919 became the first country to recognise Afghan sovereignty.[citation needed]

Relations between the two nations became complicated following the 1978 communist coup known as the Saur Revolution. The new communist Democratic Republic of Afghanistan was highly dependent on the Soviet Union, and the Soviet support for the widely disliked communist regime, and the ensuing Soviet–Afghan War, led to a great hatred for the Soviets in much of the Afghan population. The Soviets occupied Afghanistan in the face of a bitter ten-year insurgency before withdrawing in 1989. Even following the withdrawal of Soviet forces, the Soviet Union provided massive support to the embattled DRA government, reaching a value of $3 billion a year in 1990. However, this relationship dissolved in 1991 along with the dissolution of the Soviet Union itself. On 13 September 1991, the Soviet government, now dominated by Boris Yeltsin, agreed with the United States on a mutual cut off of military aid to both sides in the Afghan civil war beginning on 1 January 1992. The post-coup Soviet government then attempted to develop political relations with the Afghan resistance. In mid-November it invited a delegation of the resistance's Afghanistan Interim Government (AIG) to Moscow where the Soviets agreed that a transitional government should prepare Afghanistan for national elections. The Soviets did not insist that Najibullah or his colleagues participate in the transitional process. Having been cut adrift both materially and politically, Najibullah's faction torn government began to fall apart, and the city of Kabul fell to the Mujahideen factions in April 1992.

In 2009, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev announced that he wanted to be more involved in Afghanistan, supporting development of infrastructure and the army. This came as relations between Afghan President Karzai and American President Obama reached a low.

On 9 April 2022, the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs accredited Taliban appointee Jamal Nasir Gharwal as charge d'affaires of the Afghan Embassy in Moscow.[233]

 Armenia 3 April 1992 See Armenia–Russia relations

Armenia's most notable recent foreign policy success came with 29 August treaty with Russia on friendship, cooperation and mutual assistance, in which Moscow committed itself to the defense of Armenia should it be attacked by a third party. Russia is the key regional security player, and has proved a valuable historical ally for Armenia. Although it appeared as a response to Aliyev's US trip, the treaty had probably long been under development. However, it is clear from the wider context of Armenian foreign policy that—while Yerevan welcomes the Russian security guarantee—the country does not want to rely exclusively on Moscow, nor to become part of a confrontation between Russian and US-led alliances in the Transcaucasus.

  • Armenia has an embassy in Moscow and general consulates in Rostov-on-Don and Saint Petersburg and honorary consulates in Kaliningrad and Sochi.
  • Russia has an embassy in Yerevan and general consulate in Gyumri.
  • Russia recognized the Armenian Genocide in 1995.
  • Armenia joined the Russian-led Eurasian Economic Union in 2015.
  • It is estimated that there are between 2,500,000 and 2,900,000 Armenians in Russia.
 Azerbaijan 4 April 1992 See Azerbaijan–Russia relations
 Bahrain See Bahrain–Russia relations

Russia has an embassy in Manama, and Bahrain has an embassy in Moscow.

 Bangladesh 1971 See Bangladesh–Russia relations

Relations can be traced back to 1971 during the independence war when the Soviet Union sympathised with the Mukti Bahini cause and offered their assistance in the conflict. Although the start of their relations were very favourable, Bangladesh and Russia's relations have fluctuated greatly from extremely warm during the early 1970s to an all-time low during the 1980s (attributed to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan). After the dissolution of the Soviet Union Bangladesh established ties with all the former Soviet Republics including Russia and began diversifying into other areas such as education, cultural, military and energy.

 Cambodia 13 May 1956[235] See Cambodia–Russia relations
 China 1949 See China–Russia relations
 East Timor See East Timor–Russia relations

Russia was one of the first countries to recognise East Timor's independence and took part in nearly all UN aid programs, providing food and relief personnel, including civil and transport aviation pilots.[236] After the shooting of José Ramos-Horta (former president of East Timor), the Russian ministry said; "The Russian side expresses its concern over the attempt on the life of the East Timor president, and hopes political stability in East Timor will be maintained, as a fundamental condition for a successful solution to the complicated problems it is facing. And in the interests of strengthening national unity and ensuring social and economic development."

Russia is represented in East Timor through its embassy in Jakarta (Indonesia).

 Georgia[237] 1 July 1992 (Suspended 2 September 2008)[150] See Georgia–Russia relations

On 29 August 2008, in the aftermath of the 2008 South Ossetia war, Deputy Foreign Minister Grigol Vashadze announced that Georgia had broken diplomatic relations with Russia. He also said that Russian diplomats must leave Georgia, and that no Georgian diplomat would remain in Russia, while only consular relations would be maintained. Russian foreign ministry spokesman Andrei Nesterenko said that Russia regretted this step.[238]

 India See India–Russia relations

During the Cold War, India and the Soviet Union enjoyed a strong strategic, military, economic and diplomatic relationship. After the collapse of the USSR, India improved its relations with the West but it continued its close relations with Russia. India is the second-largest market for the Russian arms industry. In 2004, more than 70% of the Indian Military's hardware came from Russia, making Russia the chief supplier of arms.[239] Since 2000 and the visit of Vladimir Putin in India, there has been an Indo-Russian Strategic Partnership also referred as "special and privileged strategic partnership" .

 Indonesia February 1950 See Indonesia–Russia relations

Russia is represented in Indonesia especially an Embassy in Jakarta. Russian Ambassador to Indonesia Ludmilla Georgievna serves as the First Female Russian Ambassador to Indonesia, since 2018.

Yudhoyono meeting Russian President Vladimir Putin to sign a defense deal in Jakarta, September 2007.

The Soviet Union established diplomatic relations with Indonesia in 1950 and was one of the very few countries to recognize Indonesia's independence from the Netherlands after World War II.

Early in the Cold War, both countries had very strong relations, with Indonesian president Sukarno visiting Moscow and Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev visiting Jakarta. When Sukarno was overthrown by General Suharto, relations between the two states were significantly deteriorated, likely due to Indonesia's enforced anti-communist policy under Suharto following the 1965 unrest.

Relations between the Soviet Union and Indonesia grew tense for 20 years, but a thaw began when Gorbachev came to power. However, unlike the relations with China during Suharto's rule, the diplomatic relations were not suspended and remained intact. Indonesia's negative views of the Soviet Union had significantly increased following the 1979 Soviet-Afghan War, with many Indonesians claiming it as a "communist crime against Muslims". During this time, Indonesia is also one of many countries that boycotted the 1980 Moscow Olympics.

Indonesian President Suharto visited the Soviet Union in September 1989 for the first time since taking power more than two decades prior. Official talks between Suharto and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev taking place in the Kremlin. The USSR under Gorbachev began to develop closer ties with Indonesia alongside other Southeast Asian countries, and relations between the two states were improving once again since the formation of the modern-day Russian Federation. Under Boris Yeltsin and later Vladimir Putin, relations were generally stable and continued to the present day.

 Iran See Iran–Russia relations

Relations between Russia and Persia (pre-1935 Iran) have a long history, as they officially commenced in 1521 with the Safavids in power. Past and present contact between Russia and Iran has always been complicated and multi-faceted, often wavering between collaboration and rivalry. The two nations have a long history of geographic, economic, and socio-political interaction. Their mutual relations have often been turbulent, and dormant at other times. Since 2019 however, their relationship has drastically improved and Russia and Iran are now strategic allies and form an axis in the Caucasus alongside Armenia. Iran has its embassy in Moscow and consulate generals in the cities of Kazan and Astrakhan. Russia has its embassy in Tehran, and consulate generals in the cities of Rasht and Isfahan.

 Iraq 9 September 1944 See Iraq–Russia relations
 Israel 17 May 1948 See Israel–Russia relations and Russian language in Israel
 Japan 7 February 1855 See Japan–Russia relations or Japan–Soviet Union relations

Japan's relations with Russia are hampered by the two sides' inability to resolve their territorial dispute over the four islands that make up the Northern Territories (Kuriles), which the Soviet Union seized towards the end of World War II. The stalemate has prevented conclusion of a peace treaty formally ending the war. The dispute over the Kuril Islands exacerbated the Japan–Russo relations when the Japanese government published a new guideline for school textbooks on 16 July 2008 to teach Japanese children that their country has sovereignty over the Kuril Islands. The Russian public was outraged by the action. the Foreign Minister of Russia criticized the action while reaffirming its sovereignty over the islands.[248]

 Jordan 20 August 1963 See Jordan–Russia relations

Russia has an embassy in Amman, while Jordan has an embassy in Moscow. Both countries had established diplomatic relations on 20 August 1963.[249]

 Kazakhstan See Kazakhstan–Russia relations

Kazakhstan has an Embassy of Kazakhstan in Moscow, consulate-general in Saint Petersburg, Astrakhan and Omsk. Russia has an embassy in Astana and consulates in Almaty and Uralsk.

Diplomatic relations between Russia and Kazakhstan have fluctuated since the fall of the Soviet Union but both nations remain particularly strong partners in regional affairs and major supporters of the Collective Security Treaty Organization, Shanghai Cooperation Organisation and Eurasian Economic Union.[250] Kazakhstani-Russian relations have been strained at times by Astana's military and economic cooperation with the United States as well as negotiations over Russia's continued use of the Baikonur Cosmodrome, however the two nations retain high-level military and economic cooperation perhaps second among former Soviet states only to that between Russia and Belarus. Kazakhstan sells oil and gas to Russia at a significantly reduced rate and Russian businesses are heavily invested in Kazakhstan's economy.

 Kyrgyzstan See Kyrgyzstan–Russia relations
President Almazbek Atambayev and Russian PM Dmitry Medvedev during the Moscow Victory Day Parade, 9 May 2015

Whereas the other Central Asian republics have sometimes complained of Russian interference, Kyrgyzstan has more often wished for more attention and support from Moscow than it has been able to obtain. For all the financial support that the world community has offered, Kyrgyzstan remains economically dependent on Russia, both directly and through Kazakhstan. In early 1995, Askar Akayev, the then President of Kyrgyzstan, attempted to sell Russian companies controlling shares in the republic's twenty-nine largest industrial plants, an offer that Russia refused.[251]

 Laos See Laos–Russia relations
 Lebanon See Lebanon–Russia relations
  • The "Artillery Square" in Beirut witnessed battles involving the Russian naval forces that were brought to the port of "St. George" to fight alongside the people who rose up against the Turkish rule. That was in 1773. What was the uprising of the people at that time as resistance to the "Ottoman occupation". The naval forces set up their artillery at Beirut Square, which still bears the name "Artillery Square" and buried its soldiers who fought the Turks with the Lebanese soldiers in the cemetery of the Orthodox Church of St.Meter in Achrafieh.
  • Diplomatic relations between the two countries began even before the Lebanese independence. In 1839, Russia opened its first consulate in Beirut.
  • The Soviet Union established diplomatic relations with Lebanon on 3 August 1944. Over the years, the two countries signed several agreements, including an agreement on trade and payments (30 April 1954 and 16 July 1970), on air traffic (8 February 1966), on cooperation in the tourism industry (8 June 1970), on procedures for forwarding of diplomatic mail without the escort of diplomatic couriers (2 February 1962, and 15–22 February 1971)
  • At 1946, the Soviet Union, the first country in the world for the first time in the history of the UN veto-wielding to support Lebanon and Syria's total independence.
  • Lebanon has an embassy in Moscow.
  • Russia has an embassy in Beirut.
 Malaysia 3 April 1967[254] See Malaysia–Russia relations

Russia has an embassy in Kuala Lumpur,[255] and Malaysia has an embassy in Moscow.[256]

 Mongolia 5 November 1921[257] See Mongolia–Russia relations

Relations between Mongolia and the Russian Federation have been traditionally strong since the Communist era, when Soviet Russia was the closest ally of the Mongolian People's Republic. Russia has an embassy in Ulaanbaatar and two consulate generals (in Darkhan and Erdenet). Mongolia has an embassy in Moscow, three consulate generals (in Irkutsk, Kyzyl and Ulan Ude), and a branch in Yekaterinburg. Both countries are full members of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (Russia is a participating state, while Mongolia is a partner).

After the disintegration of the former Soviet Union, Mongolia developed relations with the new independent states. Links with Russia and other republics were essential to contribute to stabilisation of the Mongolian economy. The primary difficulties in developing fruitful coordination occurred because these new states were experiencing the same political and economic restructuring as Mongolia. Despite these difficulties, Mongolia and Russia successfully negotiated both a 1991 Joint Declaration of Cooperation and a bilateral trade agreement. This was followed by a 1993 Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation[258] establishing a new basis of equality in the relationship. Mongolian President Bagabandi visited Moscow in 1999, and Russian President Vladimir Putin visited Mongolia in 2000[258] in order to sign the 25-point Ulaanbaatar Declaration, reaffirming Mongol-Russian friendship and cooperation on numerous economic and political issues.

 Myanmar See Myanmar–Russia relations

China and Russia once vetoed a U.N. Security Council resolution designed to punish Myanmar.[259][260] Relations improved even more when relations with the west deteriorated, following the Rohingya crisis.[261]

   Nepal 1956 See Nepal–Russia relations

Nepal and the Soviet Union had established diplomatic relations in 1956. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Nepal extended full diplomatic recognition to the Russian Federation as its legal successor. Since then numerous bilateral meetings have taken place between both sides. Since 1992 numerous Nepalese students have gone to Russia for higher studies on a financial basis. In October 2005 the Foreign ministers of both countries met to discuss cooperation on a variety of issues including political, economic, military, educational, and cultural. Both countries maintain embassies in each other's capitals. Russia has an embassy in Kathmandu while Nepal has an embassy in Moscow.

 North Korea See North Korea–Russia relations
North Korean embassy in Moscow, Russia.
Russian embassy in Pyongyang.

Russia–DPRK relations are determined by Russia's strategic interests in Korea and the goal of preserving peace and stability in the Korean peninsula. Russia's official position is by extension its stance on settlement of the North Korean nuclear crisis.[vague]

 Pakistan 1948[262] See Pakistan–Russia relations

Relations between these two countries have been strained in the past, because of Pakistan's close ties to America and its support for the Afghan rebels during the invasion by the USSR.[citation needed] However, the relations had improved since 1999 and become cordial in 2014. The Russian Army started their first ever joint-drill in 2016.

 Philippines 2 June 1976 See Philippines–Russia relations
 Qatar See Qatar–Russia relations
Russian President Vladimir Putin meets with Qatar's Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Moscow, January 2016
 Saudi Arabia 1926 See Russia–Saudi Arabia relations
  • Russia has an embassy in Riyadh.
  • Saudi Arabia has an embassy in Moscow.
 Singapore 1 June 1968 See Russia–Singapore relations
  • Singapore maintains an embassy in Moscow and Russia has an embassy in Singapore.

Singapore and the Soviet Union (now Russia) entered into full diplomatic relations on 1 June 1968. The two nations engaged in trade and economic cooperation. After the start of Vladimir Putin's term, Singapore and Russia strengthened ties, participating in a number of regional meetings such as the ASEAN-Russia Summit and the ASEAN Regional Forum. Both Singapore and Russia are members of APEC.

 South Korea 30 September 1990 See Russia–South Korea relations
 Sri Lanka See Russia–Sri Lanka relations
President Mahinda Rajapaksa with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, at St. Petersburg Economic Forum, in June 2011.
  • During the war between the Sri Lanka Armed Forces (Government of Sri Lanka) and Tamil Tigers, Russia helped Sri Lanka by providing education on battle field tactics to Sri Lanka Army.
  • Sri Lanka also reacted in favor of Russia during the Ukrainian crisis, and acknowledged the concerns of Russia as justifiable.
  • Russia has an embassy in Colombo. Sri Lanka has an embassy in Moscow.
 Syria See Russia–Syria relations

Russia has an embassy in Damascus and a consulate in Aleppo, and Syria has an embassy in Moscow. As with most of the Arab countries, Russia enjoys a historically strong and stable friendly relationship with Syria.

Since 1971, Russia has leased port facilities in Tartus for its naval fleet. Between 1992 and 2008 these facilities were much in disrepair, however, works have commenced concurrent with the 2008 South Ossetia war to improve the port's facilities to support an increased Mediterranean presence of the Russian Navy.

Russia is believed to have sent Syria dozens of Iskander missiles.[266]

Russia has been strongly supporting Syria in the Syrian civil war, especially since the start of an air campaign in 2015.

 Taiwan See Russia–Taiwan relations

In the Chinese Civil War, the Soviet Union had a tumultuous yet strategic relations with the Kuomintang-led Nationalist China until 1949 with the proclamation of the People's Republic of China and the subsequent military takeover of Mainland China by the Chinese Communist Party. In the Second Taiwan Strait Crisis, the Soviet Union under the leadership of Nikita Khrushchev recommended the internationalization of the Taiwan Question and appealed to the United Nations and other multilateral organizations to erase the crisis, further, the Communist Party of the Soviet Union called for the Ten Nations Summit in New Delhi to discuss the issue and eradicate the military tension on 27 September 1958 and undermined as one of the precursors of the latter Sino-Soviet split.[267] Since the formation of the Russian Federation, Taiwan has exported many ferric materials to Russia in 2004–2005. In 2005, the total amount of the trade between the two economies was $2,188,944,473. Russia also has a representative office in Taipei,[268] and Republic of China has a representative office in Moscow.[269] According to the data, Russia keeps a positive balance in its trade relations with Taiwan mainly from crude oil, cast iron and steel, nonferrous metals, petrochemical products, ferroalloys, coking coal, timber, and chemical fertilizers. Russia imports mostly electronics and electronic parts, computers and computer parts, and home appliances. The two countries cooperate closely and intensely by establishing unofficial diplomatic relations since 1993~1996. Taipei is targeting Russia for exporting opportunities and marketing potentials and this mutually-beneficial relationship is effective, especially under the framework of APEC.[270]

 Tajikistan See Russia–Tajikistan relations
Embassy of Tajikistan in Moscow

Until 2005, Russia had 11,000 border guards manning the Tajik frontier with Afghanistan. In September 2012, and after months of negotiating, Russia and Tajikistan have reached an agreement on what Russia will pay for its bases in Tajikistan and extended the lease to 20 or 29 years. The bases are used for 9,000 Russian troops of the 201st Motor Rifle Division. The new deal with Tajikistan makes it worthwhile for Russia to upgrade the four army camps and one air base they occupy. To get the long lease, Russia agreed to sell Tajikistan weapons and military equipment at a sharp discount and train Tajik officers in Russian schools, for free, for the duration of the deal. Tajikistan also promises to help keep the heroin out of Russia.[271]

 Turkey See Russia–Turkey relations
Russian President Vladimir Putin meets with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Germany, January 2020
 Turkmenistan See Russia–Turkmenistan relations

Recently, Russian-Turkmenistan relations have revolved around Russia's efforts to secure natural gas export deals from Turkmenistan. Russia is competing with China, the European Union, India and the United States for access to Turkmenistan's rich supply of hydrocarbons.[274] The two countries often lock horns over price negotiations for gas exports to Russia.[275][276] Turkmen president Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow has agreed to help supply and expand the Russian-backed Pricaspiysky pipeline, however no action has yet occurred towards this goal.[277]

 United Arab Emirates December 1971 See Russia–United Arab Emirates relations
  • Russia has an embassy in Abu Dhabi and a consulate-general in Dubai.
  • United Arab Emirates has an embassy in Moscow.
 Uzbekistan 1992 See Russia–Uzbekistan relations
 Vietnam 30 January 1950 See Russia–Vietnam relations


Country Formal relations began Notes
 European Union
 Albania 7 April 1924 See Albania–Russia relations
 Austria See Austria–Russia relations
 Belarus See Belarus–Russia relations or Foreign relations of Russia towards Belarus

The introduction of free trade between Russia and Belarus in mid-1995 led to a spectacular growth in bilateral trade, which was only temporarily reversed in the wake of the financial crisis of 1998. President Alexander Lukashenko sought to develop a closer relationship with Russia. The framework for the Union of Russia and Belarus was set out in the Treaty On the Formation of a Community of Russia and Belarus (1996), the Treaty on Russia-Belarus Union, the Union Charter (1997), and the Treaty of the Formation of a Union State (1999). The integration treaties contained commitments to monetary union, equal rights, single citizenship, and a common defence and foreign policy.

 Belgium See Belgium–Russia relations

Russia has an embassy in Brussels and a consulate-general in Antwerp, whilst Belgium has an embassy in Moscow and an honorary consulate in Saint Petersburg.

 Bosnia and Herzegovina See Bosnia and Herzegovina–Russia relations

Bosnia is one of the countries where Russia has contributed troops for the NATO-led stabilization force.[281] Others were sent to Kosovo and Serbia.

 Bulgaria 1879-07-07 see Bulgaria–Russia relations
 Croatia 1992-05-25 See Croatia–Russia relations
 Czech Republic See Czech Republic–Russia relations
  • Czech republic is on an 'unfriendly states list'.
  • Russia also has further reduced its oil deliveries to the Czech Republic.
  • The Czech Republic has an embassy in Moscow, and two consulate generals (in Saint Petersburg and Yekaterinburg).
  • The Russian Federation has an embassy in Prague, and two consulate generals in (Brno and Karlovy Vary).
 Denmark 8 November 1493 See Denmark–Russia relations
 Estonia 2 February 1920 See Estonia–Russia relations and Chechen–Estonia relations

Russia recognised Estonia via the Tartu Peace Treaty on 2 February 1920. Russian-Estonian relations were re-established in January 1991, when presidents Boris Yeltsin of RSFSR and Arnold Rüütel of the Republic of Estonia met in Tallinn and signed a treaty governing the relations of the two countries after the anticipated independence of Estonia from the Soviet Union.[289][290] The treaty guaranteed the right to freely choose their citizenship for all residents of the former Estonian SSR.

Russia re-recognised the Republic of Estonia on 24 August 1991 after the failed Soviet coup attempt, as one of the first countries to do so. The Soviet Union recognised the independence of Estonia on 6 September. Estonia's ties with Boris Yeltsin weakened since the Russian leader's initial show of solidarity with the Baltic states in January 1991. Issues surrounding the withdrawal of Russian troops from the Baltic republics and Estonia's denial of automatic citizenship to persons who settled in Estonia in 1941-1991 and offspring[291] ranked high on the list of points of contention.

  • The Estonian parliament in October 2022 voted in favour of officially recognising Russia as a terrorist state.[292]

Relations with Russia are peaceful and friendly. Finland imports a lot of goods and basic necessities, such as fuel, and the two nations are agreeing on issues more than disagreeing on them. Russia has an embassy in Helsinki, a consulate-general in Turku and consulates in Lappeenranta and Mariehamn.

Finland has an embassy in Moscow and a consulate-general in Saint Petersburg.

Finland was a part of the Russian Empire for 108 years, after being annexed from the Swedish empire. Discontent with Russian rule, Finnish national identity, and World War I eventually caused Finland to break away from Russia, taking advantage of the fact that Russia was withdrawing from World War I and a revolution was starting in earnest. Following the Finnish Civil War and October revolution, Russians were virtually equated with Communists and due to official hostility to Communism, Finno-Soviet relations in the period between the world wars remained tense. Voluntary activists arranged expeditions to Karelia (heimosodat), which ended when Finland and the Soviet Union signed the Treaty of Tartu in 1920. However, the Soviet Union did not abide by the treaty when they blockaded Finnish naval ships. Finland was attacked by the USSR in 1939. Finland fought the Winter War and the Continuation War against the Soviet Union in World War II. During these wars the Finns suffered 90,000 casualties and inflicted severe casualties on the Russians (120,000 dead in the Winter War and 200,000 in the Continuation War).

Contemporary issues include problems with border controls causing persistent truck queues at the border, airspace violations, pollution of the Baltic Sea, and Russian duties on exported wood to Finland's pulp and paper industry. Russia also considered large swathes of land near the Finnish border as special security area where foreign land ownership is forbidden. A similarly extensive restriction does not apply to Russian citizens. The Finnish Defence Forces and Finnish Security Intelligence Service have suspected that Russians have made targeted land purchases near military and other sensitive installations for intelligence or special operations purposes.[293][294] Right-wing commentators accuse the government of continuing the policy of Finlandisation.

Recently, Finland-Russia relations have been under pressure with annexation of Crimea by the Russian Federation, which Finland considers illegal. Together with the rest of the European Union, Finland enforces sanctions against Russia that followed. Still, economic relations have not entirely deteriorated: 11.2% of imports to Finland are from Russia, and 5.7% of exports from Finland are to Russia, and cooperation between Finnish and Russian authorities continues.[295]

 France See France–Russia relations

Right after the breakup of the USSR, bilateral relations between France and Russia were initially warm. On 7 February 1992, France signed a bilateral treaty, recognizing Russia as a successor of the USSR. As described on the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the bilateral relations between France and Russia remain longstanding, and remain strong to this day.[296]

 Germany See Germany–Russia relations

Germany tries to keep Russia engaged with the rest of the Western world. The future aim is to promote a stable market-economy liberal democracy in Russia, which is part of the Western world.

 Greece See Greece–Russia relations
 Holy See 2009 See Holy See–Russia relations.

Russia has an embassy in Rome accredited to the Holy See. Holy See–Russia relations are largely linked to ecumenical relations with the Russian Orthodox Church.

 Hungary See Hungary–Russia relations
 Iceland See Iceland–Russia relations
  • Iceland has an embassy in Moscow.[297]
  • Russia has an embassy in Reykjavík.[298]
  • Both countries have close ties in financing, which has strengthened the relations between the two.[299] Iceland also called Russia as its "new friend" after having been turned down by its traditional allies for an emergency loan to boost the balance sheet of its second largest commercial bank.[300]
  • Iceland is on Russia's list of unfriendly countries
 Ireland See Ireland–Russia relations
 Italy See Italy–Russia relations

Russia has an embassy in Rome and consulates in Genoa, Milan and Palermo, and Italy has an embassy in Moscow, a consulate in Saint Petersburg, two consulte generals (in Ekaterinburg and Kaliningrad), and two embassy branches in (Samara and Volgograd). Both countries are full members of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe.

Russia enjoys close relations with Italy. In 2006, Russia and Italy have signed a protocol of cooperation for fighting crime and defending civil liberties. There are close commercial ties between the two countries. Italy is Russia's second important commercial partner in the EU, after Germany. and its state-owned energy company, ENI, has recently signed a very important long-term contract with Gazprom, to import Russian gas into Italy.

The relationship between Russia and Italy goes back a long way. Already in the 1960s, Italy's FIAT built a car-assembling plant in the Soviet city of Tolyatti (a city named after the Italian Communist Party's secretary Palmiro Togliatti). Russians have always visited Italy in great numbers. Many Russian students come to Italy each year to study arts and music.[citation needed] Unlike many other Western European countries, Italy has traditionally always maintained good relationships with Russia, even during the Soviet era.[citation needed] In particular, the Silvio Berlusconi Government (2001–2006) strengthened Italy's ties with Russia, due to his personal friendship with President Vladimir Putin. Cooperation extends also to the aviation sector, between Italy's Alenia and Russia's Sukhoi, who are jointly developing a new aircraft. Finally, for a long time Italy had the largest communist party in the Western world, with over 2 million members. .[301]

 Latvia 1920-10-04 and again 1991-10-04 See Latvia–Russia relations
  • Until 1917, Latvia had been part of the Russian empire. Following the Latvian declaration of independence, war broke out between Latvia and the Russian SFSR.
  • Diplomatic relations between the two countries were first established in 1920, following the conclusion of a Soviet-Latvian peace treaty on 11 August 1920.[302] The treaty was ratified by the Latvian Constituent Assembly on 2 September, and by the Latvian government on 25 September. On the Russian side, it was ratified by the Pan Russian Central Executive Committee on 9 September. Ratification letters were exchanged between the two governments in Moscow on 4 October, the date on which in entered into effect. These relations lasted until the Soviet take over of Latvia in 1940.
  • Following the collapse of the Soviet Union, the Russian government recognized the independence of Latvia on 24 August 1991.
  • Russia expresses concern for how Latvia's language and naturalization laws effect Latvia's Russian-speaking population. Russians comprised 27.6% of the population in 2010. In turn, Latvia is interested in the welfare of ethnic Latvians still residing in Russia. The latest Russian census shows about 40,000 still living in Russia, but sources indicate that given the probability of an undercount, Latvians in Russia probably number about 50,000-60,000.
 Liechtenstein 30 January 1994[157] See Liechtenstein–Russia relations
 Lithuania 12 July 1920 and again 27 July 1991 See Lithuania-Russia relations
 Netherlands See Netherlands-Russia relations
 Norway 30 October 1905 See Norway–Russia relations
 Poland See Poland–Russia relations

In recent years, relations with Russia have worsened considerably. Poland responded with strong disapproval towards the 2008 Georgian Crisis, in which a military invasion of Georgia was led by Russia. Georgia is a former USSR republic, Poland was a member of the Eastern Bloc, and Poland stated its support for Georgia and condemned Russia's actions. The Polish believed the invasion was carried out by the Russians in an attempt to reestablish and reassert its dominance over its former republics. Since 2009, however, relations with Russia somewhat improved - despite the plane accident where the former Polish president died on what is still considered a controversial event. After the Annexation of Crimea by the Russian Federation the relations deteriorated again, as Poland strongly condemned Russian actions against Ukraine.

  • Poland has an embassy in Moscow and consulates-general in Irkutsk, Kaliningrad and Saint Petersburg.
  • Russia has an embassy in Warsaw and consulates-general in Gdańsk, Kraków and Poznan.
 Portugal 1779 See Portugal–Russia relations
  • The countries are the easternmost and westernmost in Europe, and they both have very good relations with each other.
  • Portugal has an embassy in Moscow.
  • Russia has an embassy in Lisbon.
 Romania 1878-10-12 See Romania–Russia relations
 Serbia 1838/1940 See Russia–Serbia relations

Diplomatic relations between the Kingdom of Yugoslavia and the Soviet Union were established on 24 June 1940, and Serbia and the Russian Federation recognize the continuity of all inter-State documents signed between the two countries. There are about 70 bilateral treaties, agreements and protocols signed in the past. Serbia and the Russian Federation have signed and ratified 43 bilateral agreements and treaties in diverse areas of mutual cooperation so far.[306]

 Slovakia 1993-01-01 See Russia–Slovakia relations
 Slovenia 1992-05-25 See Russia–Slovenia relations
 Spain See Russia–Spain relations
  • Russia has an embassy in Madrid and a consulate-general in Barcelona.
  • Spain has an embassy in Moscow and a consulate-general in Saint Petersburg.
 Sweden See Russia–Sweden relations.

Both countries had a history of war, and reastablishing diplomatic missions. Russia has an embassy in Stockholm and a consulate in Gothenburg, and Sweden has an embassy in Moscow and consulates in Saint Petersburg and Kaliningrad.

  Switzerland 1816 See Russia–Switzerland relations

Switzerland opened a consulate in Saint Petersburg in 1816, upgrading it to a legation 90 years later. The two countries broke off diplomatic relations in 1923, when Russia was going through a period of revolutionary turmoil – and they were not resumed until 1946. Russia has an embassy in Bern and a Consulate-General in Geneva. Switzerland has an embassy in Moscow and since 2006, a Consulate-General in Saint Petersburg.

 Ukraine Diplomatic relations severed in February 2022 See Russia–Ukraine relations
 United Kingdom See Russia–United Kingdom relations
  • Russia has an embassy in London and a consulate-general in Edinburgh.
  • United Kingdom has an embassy in Moscow and consulates-general in Saint Petersburg and Yekaterinburg.
  • The United Kingdom is on Russia's list of unfriendly countries


Country Formal relations began Notes
 Australia 1942 See Australia–Russia relations
 Nauru See Nauru–Russia relations

Russia is represented in Nauru through its embassy in Canberra (Australia). Russia's ambassador to Australia Alexander Blokhin serves concurrently as Russia's non-resident ambassador to Nauru (as well as to Fiji and Vanuatu).

Nauru's banks are said to have provided services to the mafia in Russia during the 1990s; over the course of the 1990s, approximately 70 billion U.S. dollars owned by Russian mafia were held in Nauru banks.[313]

In 2009, Nauru became the fourth country to recognize the states of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, breakaway regions of Georgia. Only three other UN member states have done so. Russia was reported to be giving Nauru $50M in humanitarian aid in exchange.[314]

 New Zealand 1943 See New Zealand–Russia relations
 Tonga 1976 See Russia–Tonga relations

The Kingdom of Tonga and the Soviet Union established formal diplomatic relations in 1976. Tonga was the first Pacific Island country to establish relations with the USSR. The USSR was dissolved in 1991 and was succeeded by Russia as the successor state.

On 2 October 2005, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Sergey Lavrov and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Tonga ST T. Tupou exchanged telegrams offering congratulations on the occasion of 30th anniversary of establishing diplomatic relations between the two nations. In his heads of foreign ministries of Russia and Tonga expressed confidence in further development of Russian-Tongan relations in the interests of the peoples of both countries and strengthen peace and security in the Asia-Pacific region.[315]

Russia has a non-resident ambassador based in Canberra, Australia.

 Vanuatu 30 June 1986 See Russia–Vanuatu relations or Soviet Union–Vanuatu relations
  • In 1987, Vanuatu authorised Soviet vessels to fish within Vanuatu's Exclusive Economic Zone, in exchange for economic aid. The agreement lapsed the following year, and was not renewed, due to disagreements over the price to be paid for fishing rights by the USSR.[316]


Global opinion

Public opinion on Russia (2022)

Pew Research Center indicated that (as of 2015) only four surveyed countries have a positive view (50% or above) of Russia. The top ten most approving countries are Vietnam (75%), Ghana (56%), China (51%), South Korea (46%), Lebanon (44%), Philippines (44%), India (43%), Nigeria (39%), Tanzania (38%), Ethiopia (37%), and Uganda (37%). The ten countries with the most negative views of Russia were Pakistan (12%), Turkey (15%), Poland (15%), United Kingdom (18%), Jordan (18%), Ukraine (21%), Japan (21%), United States (22%), Mexico (24%), and Australia (24%). Russians own view of Russia was overwhelmingly positive at 92%.[317]

Alleged aggressiveness

The term has been used to refer to both Catherine the Great's 18th century agenda[318] and 21st century Russian policies.[319] In the 1990s supporters of NATO expansion into Eastern Europe claimed this would diminish "Russian aggression".[320]

The post-Maidan conflict in Ukraine is usually blamed on "Russian aggression".[321] NATO-sponsored analysts have described what they call a cybernetic "Russian aggression" against Ukraine in the 2010s.[319]


NATO and the European Union

See also: NATO–Russia relations and Russia–European Union relations

Russia is a member of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), Union of Russia and Belarus, Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), Paris Club, and the North Atlantic Cooperation Council (NACC). It signed the NATO Partnership for Peace initiative on 22 June 1994. On 20 May 1997, NATO and Russia signed the NATO–Russia Founding Act, which the parties hoped would provide the basis for an enduring and robust partnership between the Alliance and Russia—one that could make an important contribution to European security architecture in the 21st century, though already at the time of its signing doubts were cast on whether this accord could deliver on these ambitious goals.[322]

This agreement was superseded by the NATO–Russia Council that was agreed at the Reykjavík Ministerial and unveiled at the Rome NATO Summit in May 2002. On 24 June 1994, Russia and the European Union (EU) signed a partnership and cooperation agreement. European Union imposed sanctions on Russian businesses and individuals in 2014, regarding the annexation of Crimea and alleged support for separatists during War in Donbas.[323]

Following the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022, non NATO/EU countries feel threatened by Russia with EU candidate status being granted to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ukraine and Moldova in 2022, EU negotiations speeding up for Albania and North Macedonia and Finland joining NATO in 2023 with Sweden likely to also join in 2023.

Former Soviet Republics and Warsaw Pact

The non-Russian countries that were once part of the USSR have been termed the 'near abroad' by Russians. More recently, Russian leaders have been referring to all 15 countries collectively as "Post-Soviet Space," while asserting Russian foreign policy interest throughout the region.[324] After the USSR was dissolved by the presidents of Russia, Ukraine and Belarus, Russia tried to regain some sort of influence over the post-Soviet space by creating, on 8 December 1991, a regional organization – the Commonwealth of Independent States. The following years, Russia initiated a set of agreements with the Post-Soviet states which were designed to institutionalize the relations inside the CIS. However, most of these agreements were not fulfilled and the CIS republics began to drift away from Russia, which at that time was attempting to stabilize its broken economy and ties with the West.[325]

Vladimir Putin and the Ukrainian Prime Minister Mykola Azarov, 12 April 2011

One of the major issues which had an influence on the foreign relations of Russia in FSU was the remaining large Russian minority populations in many countries of the near abroad. This issue has been dealt with in various ways by each individual country. They have posed a particular problem in countries where they live close to the Russian border, such as in Ukraine and Kazakhstan, with some of these Russians calling for these areas to be absorbed into Russia. By and large, however, Russians in the near-abroad do not favor active intervention of Russia into the domestic affairs of neighboring countries, even in defense of the interests of ethnic Russians.[326] Moreover, the three Baltic states (Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania) have clearly signaled their desire to be outside any claimed Russian sphere of influence, as is reflected by their joining both the NATO alliance and the European Union in 2004.

Close cultural, ethnic and historical links exist between Russia, Belarus and Ukraine. The traditional Russian perspective is that they are one ethnic group, with Russians called 'Great Russians', Belarusians 'White Russians' and Ukrainians 'Little Russians'. This manifested itself in lower levels of nationalism in these areas, particularly Belarus and Ukraine, during the disintegration of the Soviet Union. However, few Ukrainians accept a "younger brother" status relative to Russia[citation needed],[327] and Russia's efforts to insert itself into Ukrainian domestic politics, such as Putin's endorsement of a candidate for the Ukrainian presidency in the last election, are contentious.

Russia maintains its military bases in Armenia, Belarus, Kyrgyzstan, the Transnistria region of Moldova, the occupied South Ossetia region of Georgia and Tajikistan.

Russia's relationships with Georgia are at their lowest point in modern history due to the Georgian-Russian espionage controversy and due to the 2008 Russo-Georgian war, Georgia broke off diplomatic relations with Russia and has left the Commonwealth of Independent States.

Russia's relations with Ukraine, since 2013, are also at their lowest point in history as a result of the pro-Western Euromaidan revolution in Ukraine, the 2014 Crimean Crisis and the pro-Russian insurgency in Ukraine's Donetsk and Luhansk regions. Ukraine withdrew from the Commonwealth of Independent States in 2018, with Moldova following in 2022 after Russia invaded Ukraine.

Russia maintains diplomatic relations with most countries that were once part of the former Warsaw Pact, and furthermore, Albania. Russia also continues to maintain friendly relations with Cuba, Mongolia and Vietnam as well as third world and non-aligned countries of Afghanistan, Angola, Benin, Cambodia, Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, Grenada, Guinea-Bissau, India, Iraq, Laos, Mozambique, Serbia, Syria and the former Southern part of Yemen.

International membership

Main article: Permanent Representatives of Russia to international organisations

Further information: Russia and the United Nations

Membership in International Organizations:[328]

Russia holds a permanent seat, which grants it veto power, on the Security Council of the United Nations (UN). Prior to 1991, the Soviet Union held Russia's UN seat, but, after the breakup of the Soviet Union the Russian government informed the United Nations that Russia will continue the Soviet Union's membership at the United Nations and all other UN organs.

Russia is an active member of numerous UN system organizations, including:

Russia also participates in some of the most important UN peacekeeping missions, including:

Russia also holds memberships in:

Mediation in international conflicts

Russia has played an important role in helping mediate international conflicts and has been particularly actively engaged in trying to promote a peace following the Kosovo conflict. Russia's foreign minister claimed on 25 February 2008 that NATO and the European Union have been considering using force to keep Serbs from leaving Kosovo following the 2008 Kosovo declaration of independence.[330]

Russia is a co-sponsor of the Middle East peace process and supports UN and multilateral initiatives in the Persian Gulf, Cambodia, Burma, Angola, the former Yugoslavia, and Haiti. Russia is a founding member of the Contact Group and (since the Denver Summit in June 1997) a member of the G8. In November 1998, Russia joined the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum (APEC). Russia has contributed troops to the NATO-led stabilization force in Bosnia and has affirmed its respect for international law and OSCE principles. Russia has accepted UN and OSCE involvement in instances of regional conflict in neighboring countries, including the dispatch of observers to Georgia, Moldova, Tajikistan, and the de facto former Republic of Artsakh.

Russia supported, on 16 May 2007, the set up of the international tribunal to try the suspects in the murder of the Lebanese Prime Minister, Rafiq Hariri.[331]

Territorial disputes


As of January 2023, Russian President Vladimir Putin cited recognition of Russia's sovereignty over the annexed territories (pictured) as a condition for peace talks with Ukraine.[335]

See also


  1. ^ Sources:[2][3][4][5]


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