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Media: Cyprus allows Russian military planes to use Paphos airbase

January 11, 2014, 6:05 UTC+3 11
The Russian air force will not be allowed to use storage facilities at the base
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Andreas Papandreou military airbase

Andreas Papandreou military airbase

© EPA/KATIA CHRISTODOULOU

NICOSIA, January 11 (Itar-Tass) - Cyprus is allowing Russian military aircraft to use the Andreas Papandreou military airbase near Paphos, as well as opening Limassol port to its naval vessels, Cyprus Weekly said on Friday.

An agreement to that effect is yet to be concluded.

Defence Minister Fotis Fotiou on Thursday submitted a proposal, in agreement with the Foreign Ministry, that initial use of the base will be limited to aircraft for humanitarian and emergency situations. The Russian air force will not be allowed to use storage facilities at the base, the weekly said.

The use of the airbase as well as the docking of Russian naval vessels at Limassol port were discussed at meetings Fotiou had in Moscow with his Russian counterpart Sergei Shoigu in May 2013 and also between Cyprus Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulidis and Russia’s Sergei Lavrov in St. Petersburg last June.

Fotiou has repeatedly told the media that the theme of a permanent Russian base in Cyprus had never been brought up.

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