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No need for Russia to “reset” relations with Asia-Pacific countries – Lavrov

January 26, 2012, 21:17 UTC+3

“The Asia-Pacific region is traditionally one of top priorities in Russia’s foreign policy,” the minister stressed

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MOSCOW, January 26 (Itar-Tass) —— Russia sees no need in a “resent” in its relations with Asia-Pacific countries, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Thursday in an interview with Japan’s Kyodo news service.

“The Asia-Pacific region is traditionally one of top priorities in Russia’s foreign policy,” he said. “Russia has no need either to “reset” its relations with Asia-Pacific countries or to “return” to the region. It has always been and will stay an inseparable part of the region.”

Moscow, Lavrov noted, “attaches key significance to expanding broad-scale mutually beneficial cooperation with Asia Pacific countries both on bilateral and multi-party levels and with due account of processes that are gaining in force in the region.”

In his words, an important task is to have Russia, especially its East Siberian and Far Eastern regions, joint integration processes in the region.

He also stressed the importance of efforts to strengthen security and stability in the region. “A security architecture must be formed in the Asia-Pacific region that would meet the interests of all countries and reflect realities of today,” the Russian foreign minister stressed.

He recalled a joint initiative on regional security put forth by Russian and Chinese Presidents Dmitry Medvedev and Hu Jintao in September 2010. “The essence of the initiative is that all Asia-Pacific countries must reiterate their commitment to principles of equal and indivisible off-bloc security, peaceful settlement of disputes, non-use of force or a threat of force, and to other basic norms of international law,” Lavrov said. “This will be the basis for further practical steps to build up mutual trust and settle regional problems.”


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