Foreign Office Blogs

A unique insight into UK foreign policy

20th February 2010 New York, USA

HMG in NYC

This is the first in a series of occasional blogs on what the Consulates-General do in the US. In New York, the Consulate-General is headquarters to UK Trade and Investment’s operations in the US (we’ll say more about how we support the British economy in future blogs).  Our UK Borders Agency team handles visa applications from […]

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18th February 2010

Leigh Turner

by Leigh Turner

Ambassador to Austria and UK Permanent Representative to the United Nations and other International Organisations in Vienna

Ukrainian militia, Euro 2012 and human rights: are they compatible?

A guest blog by Svitlana Yavorska, Head of Projects Section, British Embassy Kyiv Breaking racial and ethnic stereotyping is vital in every country.  So it was good to attend a press conference this week to mark the completion of a project funded by the Embassy to help Ukraine’s police forces, or militia, reach European best […]

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12th February 2010

Leigh Turner

by Leigh Turner

Ambassador to Austria and UK Permanent Representative to the United Nations and other International Organisations in Vienna

Why the election strengthens Ukraine’s EU case

I wrote a couple of blogs last week anticipating the Ukrainian presidential election. The first, Ukrainian election: best and worst outcomes noted that the best possible outcome of the election would be that: “the elections are recognised by the OSCE/ODIHR observer mission as being to a good standard; both sides accept the outcome; and the […]

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5th February 2010

Leigh Turner

by Leigh Turner

Ambassador to Austria and UK Permanent Representative to the United Nations and other International Organisations in Vienna

More good news about electoral fraud – Dr Pangloss speaks?

As Ukraine moves closer to the decisive second round of the presidential election on 7 February the words of the European Commission after the first round might seem a distant memory. In a statement on 18 January, the Commission welcomed the fact that the first round of the elections on 17 January “took place in […]

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4th February 2010

Leigh Turner

by Leigh Turner

Ambassador to Austria and UK Permanent Representative to the United Nations and other International Organisations in Vienna

Ukrainian election: Best and worst potential outcomes

What are the best and the worst possible outcomes of the Feb. 7 Ukrainian presidential election? The best is pretty clear. This is that the elections are recognized by the OSCE/ODIHR observer mission as being to a good standard; both sides accept the outcome; and the winner takes over as president. Countries around the world […]

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22nd January 2010

Leigh Turner

by Leigh Turner

Ambassador to Austria and UK Permanent Representative to the United Nations and other International Organisations in Vienna

Ukrainian lessons #3: crisis vocab?

My first ever blog entry last April noted my efforts not to be discouraged when I attempted to speak Ukrainian and people burst out laughing. In a later entry, I noted learning the invaluable phrases “I completely agree”, “I share your opinion”, and “You’re totally wrong”. Last week I made some new MP3 files of […]

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20th January 2010

Leigh Turner

by Leigh Turner

Ambassador to Austria and UK Permanent Representative to the United Nations and other International Organisations in Vienna

Edinburgh Business School in Kyiv

Tuesday night at the residence and another great British export to promote.  We’re here with a group of students, education experts and business people to mark the launch of the EdinburghBusinessSchool’s MBA programme in Ukraine.  It’s always great to meet students, and this is no exception: the inaugural group includes lawyers, bankers, business people and […]

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14th January 2010

Leigh Turner

by Leigh Turner

Ambassador to Austria and UK Permanent Representative to the United Nations and other International Organisations in Vienna

Good news about electoral fraud?

For months now, Ukrainian political parties have been accusing each other of preparing massive fraud during the first and second rounds of the Ukrainian presidential election on 17 January and 7 February.  So I’m intrigued to hear several respected experts express the view this week that, in fact, many of the accusations being thrown around […]

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10th December 2009

Leigh Turner

by Leigh Turner

Ambassador to Austria and UK Permanent Representative to the United Nations and other International Organisations in Vienna

How to win the anti-corruption league

Corruption is a big problem in Ukraine. The country is at place 146 out of 180 countries in Transparency International’s 2009 Corruption Perceptions Index alongside Cameroon, Ecuador, Kenya, Russia, Sierra Leone, Timor-Leste and Zimbabwe. The trend isn’t good: between 2004 and 2006, Ukraine climbed from place 122 (out of 145) to place 99, but has […]

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16th November 2009

Leigh Turner

by Leigh Turner

Ambassador to Austria and UK Permanent Representative to the United Nations and other International Organisations in Vienna

Tolerance and intolerance in Ukraine

One disadvantage of the Ukrainian election campaign is that a long-standing series of “Ukraine Says No to Racism” posters on the way to my nearest tube station has been covered up with pictures of presidential candidates.  That’s a pity, because today is International Day of Tolerance, a theme which I see the Interparliamentary Union recently […]

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