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|UK struggles with language of Russian diplomacy
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|Author:||wiz [ 16 Mar 2015 08:28 ]|
|Post subject:||UK struggles with language of Russian diplomacy|
UK struggles with language of Russian diplomacy
By James Coomarasamy
Russian speakers would understand the subtle change of the name Boris
We have heard a lot about Britain's financial deficit over the past few years but not much - until now - about Britain's linguistic deficit.
A report by the UK Parliament's Foreign Affairs Committee has concluded a lack of Russian speakers in the Foreign Office left Britain's diplomats ill-equipped to anticipate the events in Ukraine.
According to the report, an absence of Slavonic know-how meant Britain had been unprepared for the most serious East-West tensions since the end of the Cold War.
The consequence: a drive to recruit Russian experts.
In a speech last week at the international affairs think tank Chatham House, the British Foreign Secretary, Philip Hammond, announced the government was actively seeking diplomats and spies who knew their soft signs from their hard signs, who looked at the backwards "R" in "Toys Я Us" and saw the final letter in the Cyrillic alphabet.
There has been criticism of the lack of Russian speakers to closely analyse President Vladimir Putin's speeches
READ MORE AT: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-31856880
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