Putin arrives in Belarus on state visit

  MINSK:  Russian President Vladimir Putin has arrived in Minsk on Thursday for a two-day official visit. The Russian president's plane ...


MINSK:  Russian President Vladimir Putin has arrived in Minsk on Thursday for a two-day official visit.

The Russian president's plane landed at Minsk airport. The head of state was received at the airport by his Belarusian counterpart Alexander Lukashenko. According to the Kremlin press service, Putin is in Minsk at the invitation of the Belarusian leader.

Earlier, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that already on Thursday evening there would be "extensive communication" between the two leaders, and on Friday "there will be a whole day of this state visit."

According to Lukashenko's press service, the talks between the heads of state on May 24 will be held in the Independence Palace in Minsk, first with a limited circle of delegates and then with the expanded circle of delegates.

According to the press service of the Belarusian president, the parties will discuss the state and prospects of development of the entire complex of Belarusian-Russian relations: the integration agenda and implementation of the decisions of the Supreme State Council of the Union State, political dialogue, promotion of joint trade, economic and cooperation projects, strengthening of security, cooperation in the humanitarian sphere.

Putin said that during his visit to Minsk, he planned to discuss security issues with Lukashenko.

"A lot [in Russian-Belarusian relations] was done by our colleagues [from the governments of Russia and Belarus] recently with our participation and support. We will address all these matters tomorrow, including security issues," Putin told Lukashenko, who came to greet him at Minsk Airport.

They will also discuss the second phase of the Russian nuclear exercise, involving the Belarusian military.

"We’ll talk about the second phase of the exercise. This is related to direct participation of our Belarusian friends and colleagues in these events," Putin said.

The Russian president told his Belarusian counterpart that before his departure to Minsk he discussed bilateral cooperation issues with members of the Russian cabinet.

"Thanks for the opportunity to arrive late in the evening and have an informal conversation," the Russian leader told Lukashenko, who greeted him upon arrival at Minsk Airport. "After talks with my Arab friends, I had a meeting with government members to discuss my visit to your country."

According to the Russian president, cooperation in energy, agriculture and security was among the issues discussed at his meeting with members of the Russian government. Some of them will arrive in Minsk for talks later on Friday.

After a brief conversation at Minsk Airport, the presidents of Russia and Belarus continued their talks in informal atmosphere.

The trip to Belarus will be Putin's second foreign visit after he was inaugurated as Russia's president for a new term on May 7. The president made his first state visit to China, while the third will be to Uzbekistan on May 26-27.

Putin and Lukashenko last met in Moscow on May 9, and before that - on April 12. The leaders of Russia and Belarus regularly contact each other, normally once in a few weeks.

-News Feed




Local Glob: Putin arrives in Belarus on state visit
Putin arrives in Belarus on state visit
Local Glob
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