Russia respects BiH’s desire to join EU: FM

SARAJEVO, Sept. 21 (Xinhua) — Visiting Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and members of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s (BiH) Presidency agreed Friday here that it is in the mutual interest to further improve bilateral cooperation.

During a one-day visit to BiH’s capital Sarajevo, Lavrov held a meeting with Chairman of BiH Presidency Bakir Izetbegovic, and two Presidency members Mladen Ivanic and Dragan Covic.

At the meeting, “BiH and Russia maintain good and stable relations and it is in the mutual interest to improve the bilateral cooperation, especially in the economy and foreign trade, in the areas of infrastructure, energy, education, science and culture,” said a BiH Presidency statement.

Lavrov said that Russia respects the commitment of BiH to joining the European Union (EU) and appreciates the decision of all levels of government in BiH to develop good relations with Russia at the same time.

Lavrov emphasized that “Russia fully supports and respects the territorial integrity and sovereignty of BiH, as well as its internal structure that was established by the Dayton Peace Agreement.”

When it comes to improvement of bilateral ties in economic terms, members of BiH Presidency expressed promotion of country’s economy in Russia, adding the possibility of opening of BiH market for potential investors and Russian companies.

Also on Friday, Lavrov and BiH Foreign Minister Igor Crnadak signed a consultation plan between the two ministries for 2019 and 2020, defining common activities.

Relations between the two countries were established on Dec. 26, 1996.

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