The Center of the Russian Geographical Society opened in France. The solemn ceremony dedicated to this event took place in Paris on September 6, at the Russian Center for Science and Culture.
The director of the Center Daria Loyola noted that on September 7, a business visit of the delegation of the Russian Geographical Society to the French Geographical Society should take place in order to strengthen bilateral ties. The publications of the Society will be presented at the beginning of October in Paris, at the largest Russian book salon in Europe. Also in the plans are the Geographical Dictation, traveling photo exhibitions in Biarritz, Lyon and Monte Carlo.
The Center plans to organize science conferences, round tables and student exchanges. Among them are joint archaeological expeditions with the Foundation for the Development of Russian-French Historical Initiatives to search for the remains of Russian soldiers who died in France.
The Ambassador of the Russian Federation to France Alexei Meshkov, who was present at the ceremony, stressed that the opening of a representative office of the Russian Geographical Society in Paris would attract great attention of the French to the geography and history of Russia.
“I am convinced that cooperation between the Russian and French schools will yield positive results both for our countries and for geography in general,” said Aleksey Meshkov.
The ambassador reminded about the important role that the Russian Geographical Society has played in the development of the Arctic, Siberia, the Far East and Central Asia in over the 176 years of its existence, noting that knowledge of geography and history distinguishes an educated person and is mandatory for understanding the modern world. Meshkov asked to consider all employees of the Russian embassy in France to be associated members of the Russian Geographical Society.
Konstantin Volkov, director of the Russian Center for Science and Culture in France, expressed confidence that by joint efforts it would be possible to implement significant projects. One of the most important among them, he named the creation of an interactive map of historical places in France associated with Russian history and culture.
The Vice-President of the Russian Geographical Society, Deputy Director of the Institute of Geography of the Russian Academy of Sciences Vladimir Kolosov called the opening of the Society’s Center in France an important milestone. One of its important missions is to give a new impetus to cooperation between Russian and French scientists, to everyone who wants to learn more about modern Russia, its rich natural and cultural heritage, to open another "window to Russia" for French colleagues and friends.
The Board of Trustees of the established Center of the Russian Geographical Society in France included the director of the Russian Center for Science and Culture in France Konstantin Volkov; the Trade Representative of Russia in France Mikhail Makarov; the head of the Foundation for the Development of Russian-French Historical Initiatives Pierre Malinovsky; Honorary Consul of Russia in Biarritz Alexandre Miller de la Cerda; art critic, professional photographer Kirill Semyonov-Tyan-Shansky; Evgeny Stradze; representative of the Honorary Consul of Russia in the Rhône-Alpes region Francois Turkcas; and others.
The opening ceremony was also attended by Deputy Permanent Delegate to UNESCO Tatiana Dovgalenko; Jacques Gonzalez, Secretary General of the French Geographical Society; Head of the Cousteau Foundation and Equipe Cousteau Association; French geographers Edith Fagnoni, Alain Cariou, Amaël Cattaruzza, Pierre Gonnot; Head of the French Representative Office of Gazprom Yuri Virobyan; Head of the Representative Office of Russian Railways Maxim Lariychuk; director of the “Tsar Voyages” company in France Laure Jacquet; head of the “Franco-Russian Dialogue” Association Irina Dubois; and other honored guests.