“Speaking today in the State Duma, the President of the National Council of the Republic of Austria, Wolfgang Sobotka said that “Europe and Russia have a common history that is centuries old.” He believes that the most important task is to preserve these traditions, to achieve harmony and peace. Today's speech was repeatedly interrupted by stormy applause of members of the State Duma. Most of his speech was devoted to the interaction of Europe, in particular, Austria, with the Russian Federation. This is a timely response to those who are trying to embroil the Russian Federation with Europe. To those who are trying to prove that Russia is an exclusively Asian civilization, to those who oppose the economic and cultural cooperation of Russia with the European countries. This is also the response to the United States, which is trying to drive a wedge between Europe and Russia, while at the same time not pursuing the interests of its European partners. Only in cooperation with Russia, the European Union can be a strong and independent player on the world stage. Without this, it is doomed to trail along at the back of the Anglo-Saxon Atlantic project. And this is well understood in Austria, in France, and in a number of other European countries.
Peace in Europe without Russia, and even more so against Russia is impossible, that's exactly what Wolfgang Sobotka said. He also proposed to make 2019 a year of exchanges of young Austrian and Russian people, in particular, schoolchildren. I believe that this is a very important and fruitful idea, which we will fully support and assist in organization.
We will do everything possible to develop our relations with various countries, primarily with European countries, including Austria, which in recent years has been pursuing a policy of a “bridge” between Russia and Europe.”