Russia–Swaziland relations

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Russia–Swaziland relations
Map indicating locations of Russia and Swaziland

Russia

Swaziland

Russia–Swaziland relations (Russian: Российско–свазилендские отношения) are the bilateral relations between the nations of Russia and Swaziland.

On 5 September 1968, a day before Swaziland gained independence from the United Kingdom, the Soviet Union sent a telegram to the Swazi government recognising the Kingdom, and offered to establish diplomatic relations.[1] In 1970, Soviet diplomats who were accredited to Mozambique travelled to Swaziland on an unofficial basis, and raised the question of the establishment of official relations between the countries. Swazi King Sobhuza II, under pressure from the South African government, refused to establish such relations.[2]

On 3 May 1995, Russian President Boris Yeltsin issued a presidential decree instructing the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs to prepare the necessary notes to establish diplomatic relations with the Kingdom.[3] On 19 November 1999, the Russian Federation and Swaziland officially established diplomatic relations, when the ambassadors of the two countries to Mozambique met in Maputo and exchanged diplomatic notes.[4]

In 2008, bilateral trade amounted to approximately US$1 million, up from the 2007 amount of US$644,000.[5]

Up until 2009, 20 Swazi citizens have received higher education in Russia under a Russian government scholarship program.[5]

The Ambassador of Russia to Mozambique is concurrently accredited to Swaziland, with residence in Maputo. The current Ambassador to Swaziland is Igor Popov, who was appointed by Russian President Vladimir Putin on 1 June 2006,[6] and presented his Letters of Credence to King of Swaziland Mswati III on 27 July 2006.[5] Swaziland does not have diplomatic representation to Russia.[5]

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