Australian Embassy
Russian Federation
Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan

Ambassador of Australia to the Russian Federation

with non-resident accreditation to the Republics of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, the Kyrgyz Republic and Turkmenistan.

Mr Graeme Meehan

Mr Meehan is a career officer with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and was most recently Head of Post, Consulate-General, Shanghai. He has previously served overseas as Deputy Head of Mission, Australian Embassy, Beijing; Deputy Head of Post, Australian Representative Office, Taipei; and Counsellor, Australian Embassy, Beijing.

In Canberra Mr Meehan has served as Assistant Secretary, East Asia Branch; Deputy Head, China Free Trade Agreement Taskforce; and Director, Asia Section, International Division, Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet.

Mr Meehan holds a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) from the University of Melbourne. He speaks Russian and Chinese.
 

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News, Updates and Events

Australian Federal Election 2022 – Postal vote update

22 April 2022

Due to disruptions in mail and courier services between Australia and Russia, voters in Russia should be aware you may not receive a postal vote ahead of the Australian federal election.

If you do receive a postal vote, at this time we recommend you send your completed vote to another Australian Embassy, High Commission or Consulate where votes are being collected. A full list of locations is available on the AEC website.

In-person voting will not be available at the Australian Embassy in Moscow.

If you're unable to vote you should complete and submit an overseas notification form. This will advise the AEC you're overseas and may be unable to vote in this election. For more information see the overseas voting page on the AEC website.

We will continue to provide updates on voting arrangements on our website and Twitter.

Australian Federal Election 2022 – Voting overseas

11 April 2022

The next federal election will be held on 21 May 2022. If you plan to be overseas at the time of the election, check your enrolment and apply for a postal vote as soon as possible on the AEC website. If you are still in Australia, you can pre-poll vote from 9 May 2022.

In-person voting will not be available at the Australian Embassy in Moscow.

Australians in Russia and the Embassy’s other countries of accreditation are encouraged to vote via postal vote, which you can post directly to the AEC in Australia, or mail to another Embassy/High Commission/Consulate where votes are being collected. A full list of locations is available on the AEC website.

Postal votes must be returned as quickly as possible to ensure they are received by the AEC in time to be counted.

FAQs:

What is the timeframe for registering to vote?

Enrolment closes at 8pm on 18 April 2022, one week after the election is called.

How early before the election are postal votes being sent out?

The AEC will start sending postal votes immediately after the declaration of nominations. Postal votes are expected to be sent from 26 April 2022.

When do requests for postal votes close?

Requests for postal votes will close on 18 May 2022. The AEC recommends you apply for a postal vote as soon as possible to ensure there is enough time for it to be posted to you and returned to the AEC by 3 June 2022.

Registration Portal for Australians in Russia and Belarus

2 March 2022

We continue to advise Australians to leave Russia and Belarus, if it's safe to do so.

If you remain in Russia or Belarus, register your whereabouts on the registration portal for Australian citizens, permanent residents, and their immediate family members.

You should only register if you are in Russia, Belarus or Ukraine, or on behalf of an Australian citizen, permanent resident or immediate family member in one of these countries.

This is a contingency measure in response to ongoing security concerns in Russia and Belarus. Registration means the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade can better contact Australians in the event that assistance is required. Continue to monitor and subscribe to Smartraveller for the latest Russia and Belarus travel advice.

Consular Support and Travel Advice

1 March 2022

Do not travel to Russia and Belarus due to the security environment and military conflict with Ukraine. If you’re in Russia or Belarus, leave immediately using the limited commercial options available or private means, if it’s safe to do so. Flight availability could change or be disrupted at short notice. The security situation could deteriorate further with little warning. Remain vigilant and avoid any protests or demonstrations. Our ability to provide consular assistance may be limited. For more information, read the travel advice for Russia and Belarus.

We currently advise you do not travel to Ukraine due to the military conflict with Ukraine. Read the Ukraine travel advice for more information.

Monitor and subscribe to Smartraveller for up to date travel advice. Read the travel advice for your location and any destinations to make sure you meet exit and entry requirements. The security situation is unpredictable and conditions could change with little warning.

If you have significant concerns for your welfare, or that of another Australian, contact the Consular Emergency Centre on 1300 555 135 in Australia or +61 2 6261 3305 outside Australia.

Economic measures against Russia and lethal military equipment for Ukraine

28 February 2022 - Statement of the Hon. Scott Morrison MP, Prime Minister, Senator the Hon. Marise Payne, Foreign Minister, the Hon. Josh Frydenburg MP, Treasurer, and the Hon. Peter Dutton MP, Minister for Defence

The Australian Government is deeply concerned at Russia’s brutal invasion of Ukraine, which is a gross violation of international law and the United Nations Charter. We will continue to coordinate closely with our partners – including the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, NATO and the EU – to impose a high cost on Russia.

We are holding Russian President Vladimir Putin to account for his egregious unjustified war against Ukraine. From midnight last night, Australian targeted financial sanctions and travel bans came into effect on the Russian President and remaining permanent members of Russia’s Security Council: Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, Defence Minister Sergey Shoigu, Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin, and Internal Affairs Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev.

President Putin, Foreign Minister Lavrov and Defence Minister Shoigu are directly responsible for Russia’s unprovoked and unlawful further invasion of Ukraine. It is exceedingly rare to designate a head of state, and reflects the depth of our concerns. President Putin joins a very small group that includes Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe, Muammar Gaddafi of Libya and Bashar al-Assad of Syria.

Australia will work with NATO and our other partners to provide lethal as well as non-lethal military equipment, medical supplies, and financial assistance to support the people of Ukraine. As an immediate measure, Australia will contribute US$3 million to NATO’s Trust Fund for Ukraine to support non-lethal military equipment and medical supplies. Details of Australia’s contribution of lethal military equipment are being worked through with our partners and will be announced soon.

Australia will continue to work with allies and like-minded countries to impose further economic sanctions on Russia, building on the raft of travel bans and asset freezes implemented in recent days against Russia’s most influential political and military actors. So far Australia has sanctioned more than 350 Russian individuals, including corrupt oligarchs, MPs, and military commanders who are facilitating Putin’s illegal and violent ambitions. Moreover, we have sanctioned 13 Belarusian individuals and entities, including Belarusian Minister of Defence Viktor Khrenin, who has aided and abetted Putin’s aggression by allowing Russia to launch attacks from Belarus.

The Australian Government strongly supports the announcements by the European Commission, France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, Canada, and the United States on further restrictive economic measures against key Russian banks, institutions and individuals.

These measures include:

  • removal of selected Russian banks from the SWIFT global payments messaging system
  • restrictive measures to prevent the Russian Central Bank from using its international reserves in a way that undermines sanctions
  • limiting so-called golden passports for wealthy Russians connected to the Russian government
  • a trans-Atlantic task force to identify and freeze the assets of sanctioned individuals and companies that exist within their jurisdictions.

Together, these measures will impose severe costs on the Russian economy by disconnecting its key banks from the international financial system and disrupting Russian trade and investment flows. They will also paralyse Russia’s foreign reserves and prevent Russian officials and elites from accessing key financial systems.

While we expect that the SWIFT measures as announced will be implemented at a global level, we will take complementary steps as required.

The Australian Government reiterates our staunch support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and for the people of Ukraine.

Statement on Russia's invasion of Ukraine

24 February 2022 - Statement of the Hon. Scott Morrison MP, Prime Minister, and Senator the Hon. Marise Payne, Foreign Minister

Australia joins our partners in condemning Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

There is no justification for this aggression, whose cost will be borne by innocent Ukrainians.

Vladimir Putin has fabricated a feeble pretext on which to invade. Russia’s disinformation and propaganda has convinced no one.

We call on Russia to cease its illegal and unprovoked actions, and to stop violating Ukraine’s independence. Russia must reverse its breach of international law and of the UN Charter, and withdraw its military from Ukraine.

We reiterate our staunch support for Ukraine’s independence and territorial integrity – the bedrock principles of a rules-based world order.

Russia’s actions are of deep concern to Australians – especially those who have family and loved ones there.

Australia will continue playing our part to ensure Russia pays the high price this invasion warrants.

We will place financial sanctions on an additional 25 persons and four entities who have been responsible for the unprovoked and unacceptable aggression.

We will put restrictions on Australians investing in a further four financial institutions.

We will be working with like-minded countries on further consequences for Russia. 

The Australian Government will continue working with our partners to keep Australians safe and defend our values and principles.

Australia's response to Russia's aggression against Ukraine

23 February 2022 - Statement of the Hon. Scott Morrison MP, Prime Minister, and Senator the Hon. Marise Payne, Foreign Minister

The Morrison Government is taking immediate action to sanction Russian individuals, organisations and banks as part of the international effort to impose a sharp cost on Russia for its unprovoked and unacceptable aggression against Ukraine.

Under a first phase, we will impose travel bans and targeted financial sanctions on eight members of Russia’s Security Council. The Council bears responsibility for the current phase of the invasion by providing policy advice and justification to President Putin’s unilateral declaration recognising the so-called Donetsk People's Republic and the Luhansk People's Republic.

Targeted financial sanctions will mean Australian individuals and entities cannot do business with the following banks: Rossiya Bank, Promsvyazbank, IS Bank, Genbank and the Black Sea Bank for Development and Reconstruction. This is in addition to restrictions on Australians investing in the state development bank VEB.

We will amend the Autonomous Sanctions Regulations 2011 to extend existing sanctions that apply to Crimea and Sevastopol to Donetsk and Luhansk. This will impose strong economic sanctions in the regions of Donetsk and Luhansk prohibiting trade in the transport, energy, telecommunications, and oil, gas and minerals sectors.

We will also amend the Regulations to significantly broaden the scope of people and entities that Australia can list for sanctions to include those of “strategic and economic significance to Russia”. We are working with our partners to identify additional individuals who will be subject to these sanctions.

In taking these actions, we are in alignment with our key partners, the United States and the United Kingdom.

This is the beginning of our sanctions process, as we remain deeply concerned that Russia is escalating its aggression. We are determined to work with responsible nations worldwide to ensure any further invasion by Russia against its smaller, democratic neighbour incurs the high cost it deserves.

All Ukrainian nationals in Australia with a visa that is due to expire up to 30 June, will be given an automatic extension for six months.

Outstanding visa applications from Ukrainian citizens, which number approximately 430, will be prioritised and fast tracked for a decision by immigration officials, as soon as possible.

Regarding sanctions, we will not hesitate to further amend the Autonomous Sanctions Regulations 2011 to expand sanctions as necessary, and already have a wider package of sanctions on persons and entities in reserve should Russia escalate its unlawful conduct in Eastern Ukraine.

We welcome the actions taken by other likeminded countries who want to see a stable international order, notably Germany which has suspended the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project.

Australia condemns Russia’s unlawful moves on eastern Ukraine

22 February 2022 - Statement of Senator the Hon. Marise Payne, Foreign Minister

The Australian Government condemns President Putin's declaration today that the Donetsk and Luhansk regions of eastern Ukraine are independent states.

This flagrantly undermines Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity and has no validity under international law. We also condemn President Putin's announcement that Russia is deploying so-called “peacekeepers” to eastern Ukraine. These personnel are not peacekeepers.

The Australian Government is coordinating closely with the United States, United Kingdom, European Union and other governments around the world to ensure there are severe costs for Russia's aggression. Along with our partners, we are prepared to announce swift and severe sanctions that would target key Russian individuals and entities responsible for undermining Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity.

We continue to urge all Australians to leave Ukraine immediately. Do not delay. The safety of Australians and officials is our priority.

Due to the increased risk, Australian officials have been directed to depart Ukraine. Our Embassy and operations in Lviv are now temporarily closed. Australian officials have been deployed to eastern Poland and Romania to assist Australians seeking to depart Ukraine.

Australia stands in solidarity with Ukraine and continues to call on Russia to cease and reverse its unprovoked assault on its democratic neighbour.

Australians in Ukraine seeking consular assistance should call DFAT's 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre on 1300 555 135 or +61 2 6261 3305 outside Australia.

TGA recognises the Gamaleya Institute vaccine (Sputnik V, Russian Federation) for international travel to Australia

17 January 2022
Today, the TGA determined that an additional COVID-19 vaccine, the two dose course of the Gamaleya Institute vaccine (Sputnik V, Russian Federation) would be 'recognised' for the purpose of establishing a traveller's vaccination status.

Last week the TGA obtained additional information demonstrating this vaccine provides protection and potentially reduces the likelihood that an incoming traveller would transmit COVID-19 infection to others while in Australia or become acutely unwell due to COVID-19. The supporting information was based on published studies provided to the TGA by the Russian Government with the assistance of the Australian embassy in Moscow.

The data indicated that two doses of the Sputnik V (Gamaleya Institute) showed an average efficacy against symptomatic infection of 89% and against hospitalisation or death of 98-100%. As for most studies on the efficacy of the TGA approved or recognised COVID-19 vaccines, these studies were conducted prior to the emergence of the Omicron variant of COVID-19. Real-world studies assessing the effectiveness of a range of vaccines against Omicron are currently underway in many countries. The single dose course of the Gamaleya vaccine ("Sputnik Light") is not currently recognised by the TGA.

Recognition of the two dose course of the Sputnik vaccine by the TGA today follows on from recognition in late 2021 by the TGA of two major Chinese-manufactured vaccines - BBIBP-CorV (Sinopharm, for those under 60 years old) and Coronavac (Sinovac) and two major Indian-manufactured vaccines - Covaxin (Bharat Biotech) and Covishield (Serum Institute of India /AstraZeneca). The recognition of Sputnik will expand options for the return of international students, travel of skilled and unskilled workers to Australia, and travel by business people and elite sports people to our country.

Further information on requirements for incoming travel to Australia can be found at Vaccinated travellers(link is external).

Statement by Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs the Hon Marise Payne

Sentencing of Alexei Navalny

03 February 2021

Australia is deeply concerned by Russian authorities’ arrest and subsequent sentencing of Alexei Navalny to two years and eight months’ imprisonment. The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) concluded that Mr Navalny’s 2014 conviction, which was used as grounds for his current detention, was “unlawful” and “politically motivated”. We call for Mr Navalny’s immediate and unconditional release.

Australia is also concerned by the approach of Russian authorities against peaceful protesters and journalists detained in recent weeks. We call for their release without delay. Australia supports all peoples’ right to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly.

We reaffirm a call for Russia to conduct a thorough and transparent investigation into Alexei Navalny’s poisoning using the banned Novichok nerve agent last August.

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

The health and safety of Australians overseas is our highest priority. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, including measures put in place by local authorities, changes have been made to our services.  These changes are intended to protect you (our clients), our staff and the wider community.

APPOINTMENTS 

At this time we are not taking any routine passport or notarial appointments until further notice. Please continue to monitor our website and twitter for updates, and book an appointment with us once we resume our standard services.

If you require an Emergency Passport or other emergency services, please email us at [email protected] describing your circumstances or call on +7 495 956 6070 (during business hours). We will continue to prioritise consular services to those in genuine need.

If you require urgent consular assistance during business hours (9am - 5pm Monday to Friday), please contact us  on +7 495 956 6070. Contact details of our Honorary Consulates in St Petersburg and Almaty are also available hereOutside business hours, please contact the 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre on +61 2 62613305

Please subscribe for updates and monitor our official travel advice on Smartraveller website.

 

COVID-19 TEMPORARY PASSPORT ARRANGEMENTS 

Accessing the new digital upload function on the Australian Passport Office website

 

From 23 February 2022, customers who have been issued with a 10-year Australian passport since 2005 or who are applying for a child passport will be able to upload their application via the Australian Passport Office website.

In order to use new digital upload function, you must:

  • be located in Russia, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan or Uzbekistan and have a delivery address in one of these countries
  • have held a 10-year (Adult) Australian Passport since 2005; or
  • be lodging an application for a child (under 16 years of age)

     

If you do not meet the above criteria, this option is not available to you and you must lodge your Australian passport application at the Australian Embassy, Moscow. Please email us at [email protected] for instructions.

Examples where customers are not eligible for the digital upload function:

  • If you have urgent travel or require an emergency passport you are not eligible use the digital upload function for this reason
  • If you hold a Limited Validity Passport, you are not eligible to use the digital upload function
  • Age 16 years and older, if you are applying for a passport for the first-time adult passport, you are not eligible to use the digital upload function

For customers who are located in one of the above countries and meet the relevant criteria, follow the steps below to lodge your passport application:

  1. Complete the application form online.   Once the application is completed the application form/summary page will display the ‘Lodging your application’ section, which will instruct you to upload photo, documents and payment form online.
  2. Upload and submit the application form, supporting documents, digital photo and credit card payment authorisation form, as per instructions in the ‘Upload documents’ section in your account.
  3. Once your digital application is being assessed (note this may take up to 4 days), you will receive an email from [email protected] to finalise the payment authorisation. Payment is taken by Credit Card only, in AUD (Australian Dollars). Transaction fees and exchange rate conversions may be applied by your financial institution.

        You will also be contacted if:

  • the application is for a child
  • additional documentation is required
  • there is a problem with what you have submitted
  • you are not eligible for this service

Once your passport has been finalised it will be sent directly to the Australian Embassy in Moscow. The Embassy will then notify you via email, so you can organise a courier on your side or come and collect the passport in person.

Please refer to the Australian Passport Office website for current processing times.

If you face any issues when completing the passport application or during the account registration process, please contact the Australian Embassy, Moscow at [email protected].

 

BORDER AND QUARANTINE

The Australian Government is reducing travel restrictions for fully vaccinated Australians and visa holders.

If you qualify as a fully vaccinated Australian citizen or permanent resident you will be able to depart Australia without needing an exemption.

You can also arrive into some states and territories from overseas without the need to quarantine if you are fully vaccinated. In other states, 14 days quarantine is still required for all arrivals, so you will need to check state and territory websites for their requirements.

From 21 February 2022, all visa holders who are fully vaccinated for international travel purposes can travel to Australia without a travel exemption. Unvaccinated visa holders will still need to be in an exempt category or hold an individual travel exemption to enter Australia. 

Current travel restrictions will continue to apply to Australian citizens and permanent residents who are not fully vaccinated when leaving or coming to Australia.

Visit the Department of Home Affairs for the latest updates about travel restrictions and exemptions.

More information can be found here.

 

 

Please subscribe for updates and monitor our official travel advice on Smartraveller website.

  • Coronavirus (COVID-19) – information for Australian travellers can be found here
  • Coronavirus (COVID-19)- information on entry into Australia can be found here
  • Coronovirus (COVID-19)-  information from the Department of Health can be found here

 

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