Sunday, April 14

Video message from the President of Russia to the participants of the opening ceremony of the World Youth Festival

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Vladimir Putin: Dear friends!

I am sincerely glad to welcome the participants and guests of the World Youth Festival, the envoys of different countries and peoples, who are united by Russia here in Sochi.

Our country has already held such large-scale youth forums three times, and each time they confirmed that there are no borders and dividing lines for the younger generations. You will communicate with whoever you want to communicate with, get the knowledge and experience that you need.

This was also shown by hundreds of thousands of applications for participation in the festival, which came to us from 190 countries around the world, and the only thing we regret is that we could not accept all of them.

Now representatives of almost three hundred different nations have gathered in this arena. We’re in We know very well what a wealth such diversity is, what a powerful positive charge of development and spiritual mutual enrichment it possesses. Our multinational country is made up of hundreds of cultures, languages, traditions, and the brotherhood of peoples has always been and remains its main pillar, advantage, and strength. It helped us out at all turns of history, helped us to conquer new heights in science, art and education, and to win in World War II and crush Nazism. Multinational unity is the greatest value for us, and this largely determines the principles by which our state and society live and develop today.

I am talking about equality and justice, about the traditions of a strong family and mutual assistance, about serving one’s Fatherland and responsibility for its fate. I know that these values are shared by the absolute majority of the inhabitants of the Earth. Therefore, we must protect and protect them together, make dreams come true together, help each other to make the lives of billions, I want to emphasize this, billions of people better. To work together for the sake of future generations, to fight poverty and terrorism, diseases and the spread of drugs, to preserve the unique natural resources, cultural heritage, all the beauty and diversity of the planet. In such a world there is no place for racism, dictates, double standards and lies, and a person is free to speak his own language, follow the faith and traditions of his ancestors.

You are a young generation, you dream of what a safe, just world can and should be, and it is up to you to create it. The festival will give you the opportunity to discuss this with your peers. And I am sure that your discussions will be interesting and useful to the widest audience, as well as your impressions of the events that will take place at the festival venues, and, of course, about Russia itself, about the people who live here.

You will personally be able to make sure that, for example, a smile is not a mask on duty for us, but a sincere expression of feelings. That if we give our word, we always keep it. We believe in youth and are building Russia a country of opportunities for young people. And of course, we are always open to dialogue.

I have no doubt that such a trusting, friendly atmosphere will prevail at the venues of the World Youth Festival. Moreover, it all happens in the spring, on spring days. And in the cultures of the world, they symbolize not only the awakening of nature, but also new hopes, renewal, the brightest dreams, faith in success and in the future. And, of course, in love.

I am sure that at the festival you will receive a tremendous charge of positive emotions and return home with love to Of Russia.

I declare the World Youth Festival open!



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