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19 January 2023, 12:51

Minsk hosts Belarus-Russia ministerial meeting

MINSK, 19 January (BelTA) – Minsk is playing host to a meeting of the collegiums of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs of Belarus and Russia, BelTA has learned.

The Belarusian side is headed by Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergei Aleinik; the Russian delegation is led Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. Before the event, the ministers held a bilateral meeting.

"The meeting will focus on the integration, interregional contacts, coordinated actions in foreign policy," the press service of the Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

The parties are set to discuss the interaction of the ministries in terms of the implementation of the provisions of the program of coordinated actions in the field of foreign policy for 2022-2023, cooperation in foreign policy planning, coordination of actions in relation to the EU, NATO and the Council of Europe, joint work in the OSCE.

"Particular attention will be paid to cooperation in multilateral organizations in the field of arms control and ways of countering the West's policy of politicizing international economic and human rights organizations," the Russian Foreign Ministry said yesterday.

In the morning, Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko met with Sergey Lavrov. The Belarusian head of state noted: “It is very good that we have reached a balance in our trade and economic relations with the Russian Federation. We even have a slight trade surplus. This suggests that the attempts to strangle us, Russia and Belarus, have actually failed. We will definitely hold our ground.”

Aleksandr Lukashenko noted that over the difficult year 2022, the parties mapped out the way to go in order to preserve their sovereignty at all levels. “We are making good progress in import substitution. President Putin and I start almost all meetings with this matter. The economy is at the heart of everything. If our economy is doing fine, we will be able to resolve all other issues,” the head of state is sure.

Commenting on the relations between the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, the president emphasized that he had always called them exemplary. “If all our ministries cooperated in the same way as the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, we would not have any problems at all. And there would be no problematic issues altogether. I have always said this. Not only today,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

According to Sergei Lavrov, the meeting focused on the interaction of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs of the two countries, the joint meeting of the collegiums of the foreign ministries, a coordinated response to the actions taken by NATO and the EU against Belarus and Russia, as well as coordination of actions within the framework of the UN.

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