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Lavrov reaffirms Russia’s commitment to food exports to Africa

Moscow and Asmara also agreed "to deepen trust-based political dialogue and to expand efficient practices of foreign policy coordination"

MOSCOW, January 26. /TASS/. Sergey Lavrov, the nation’s top diplomat, reaffirmed Moscow’s commitments regarding food exports to poor countries in Africa in the wake of his visit to Eritrea, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Thursday.

"Sergey Lavrov reaffirmed Russia’s steadfast commitment to fulfilling all its obligations regarding export deliveries of critically important foodstuffs to African countries that need them, including within the framework of package agreements reached with UN participation," the ministry said.

The ministry said that during his meetings with Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki and Foreign Minister Osman Saleh, Lavrov discussed key areas of future development of Russian-Eritrean relations "with an emphasis placed on promoting promising joint economic projects."

"Moreover, the positive dynamics of inter-party contacts were noted, along with strengthening of educational, cultural and humanitarian ties," the statement reads.

Besides, Moscow and Asmara reaffirmed their "determination to deepen trust-based political dialogue and to expand efficient practices of foreign policy coordination regarding most pressing issues on the global and international agenda in the United Nations and other multilateral formats."

Military-technical cooperation

Russia ready to cater for Eritrea’s defense needs, Lavrov says.

"We discussed military and military-technical cooperation on the basis of previously signed agreements. We are ready to meet Eritrea’s needs in maintaining its defense capabilities. Undoubtedly, we will cooperate on humanitarian issues as well," he said.

Eritrean President participation in the second Russia-Africa summit

Moscow is counting on Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki’s participation in the second Russia-Africa summit.

"We hope that Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki will personally attend this important event," Moscow’s top diplomat was quoted as saying on the Russian Foreign Ministry’s website.

The second summit and economic forum Russia-Africa are scheduled for July 26-29. The event was first held on October 22-24, 2019 in Russia’s Black Sea resort city of Sochi.

Military operation in Ukraine

Lavrov also briefed Eritrean leaders on reasons, aims of Russia’s operation in Ukraine.

"When exchanging opinions about the development of the current geopolitical environment with respect to the situation in and around Ukraine, Sergey Lavrov gave a detailed review of the reasons, aims and objectives of the Russian special military operation in Ukraine for the leaders of Eritrea. An analysis was made of the attempts that Washington and its satellites are making to draw African countries into the hybrid war of the collective West against Russia," the ministry said in a statement.