Lavrov: 2018 FIFA World Cup sparked upsurge in global diplomacy
The 2018 FIFA World Cup sparked a blast-off in the global diplomacy, Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said.
"It is no exaggeration at all to say that it was an upsurge and a blast-off in the global diplomacy," the minister said, addressing participants of the national Educational Youth Forum dubbed the Terra Scientia.
"I believe it was a magnificent achievement that hundreds of thousands of foreign visitors had a chance of visiting over a dozen of Russian cities and to see personally how Russia and its citizens live," TASS cited Lavrov as saying.
According to the top diplomat, "judging by video footage both on television and the Internet, as well as during personal discussions with foreign football fans, it was obvious that the vast majority - leaving aside some singular exceptions, was sincerely happy to be here and they openly wished to come back having realized how famous is the hospitality of our people."
"We definitely wish for this atmosphere to linger on, but obviously only one month allocated for the World Cup was special in many senses,’ he said adding that Russia will be missing "every day [of the World Cup’s] permanent dancing, songs and barbeque on the Nikolskaya Street [in Moscow] or in any other Fan Zone."
"However, it is now obvious for me that all foreign visitors, who have been here for this month, saw for themselves that all stories presented earlier by Western media for readers and broadcast viewers about Russia were fake," Lavrov stressed.