MOSCOW, JULY 22RT and Russian Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova reveal what goes on behind closed doors at international meetings in a new special project.

“This is a sort of a genre experiment – a series of interviews on the sidelines of notable international events,” commented Zakharova. “We’ll take you behind the scenes of big politics.”

The first installment of the project captures Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s meeting with US Secretary of State John Kerry in Moscow. Zakharova takes RT correspondent Ilya Petrenko on a tour of the Foreign Ministry’s Reception House, where most summit meetings take place, and in the process explains the rules of protocol – from seating arrangements to a play-by-play of a typical working dinner.

“Very often heads of delegations will stand up for a handshake and find themselves in front of their counterpart’s national colors. Some people think that’s a mistake. In fact, it’s a matter of tradition. In some countries the accepted protocol requires that foreign ministers stand strictly in front of their country’s flag. The Americans have it the other way round, and we respect their tradition,” says Zakharova during the walk-about.

Maria Zakharova has recently made several appearances in RT’s Periscope broadcasts, did a Q&A with the RT audience, and visited the RT studios in Moscow in February 2016 for an exclusive interview.