16 Nov 2023 21:04

Russian, Venezuelan FMs discuss steps to bolster strategic partnership - Russian Foreign Ministry

MOSCOW. Nov 16 (Interfax) - Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Venezuelan Foreign Minister Yvan Gil Pinto have had a meeting in Moscow, where they discussed steps to bolster cooperation and condemned the application of unilateral sanctions as a tool for exerting pressure on sovereign states, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Thursday.

"The ministers highlighted the virtually complete coincidence of Russia's and Venezuela's approaches in global affairs and acknowledged the productive nature of their interaction in the UN, particularly within the framework of the Group of Friends in Defense of the Charter of the UN, as well as other international platforms. They stressed that employing unilateral sanction measures as a tool to put pressure on sovereign states was categorically unacceptable," it said.

The ministers planned steps to bolster the strategic partnership between Moscow and Caracas in the political, trade-economic, investment, and cultural and humanitarian fields, it said.

Russia welcomes Venezuela's determination to reinforce integration mechanisms, particularly the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA) and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), the ministry said. "Lavrov spoke in favor of promoting Russia's dialogue with leading regional associations and facilitating closer ties between Latin America and the EAEU [Eurasian Economic Union]," it said.

As reported earlier, Lavrov said at the meeting with Gil Pinto that Russia and Venezuela were interested in bolstering bilateral cooperation amid the West's sanction policy.

"Our shared opinion is that against the backdrop of the massive sanctions campaign unleashed by the West, our bilateral cooperation should help increase the sustainability of the national economies, implement import-substitution programs and strengthen the technological sovereignty of our countries," Lavrov said at a press conference following talks with his Venezuelan counterpart.

"We have worked out a large number of projects in gas production and the development of gas deposits, agriculture, medicine and pharmaceuticals, communications, space, and new technologies," Lavrov said.

"We have agreed to speed up the pace and increase the volume of interaction in all of these areas," he said.