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Top Swiss diplomat calls relations with Russia ‘diverse and intensive’

The diplomat commented on the Swiss-Russian relations

MOSCOW, June 19. /TASS/. Switzerland believes with its relations with Russia are multifaceted and dynamic, and Russian and Swiss diplomats hold up to 15 meetings annually, Head of Switzerland’s Department of Foreign Affairs Ignazio Cassis said in an interview with TASS published on Wednesday.

"Our relations are diverse and intensive: our Federal Department of Foreign Affairs holds up to 15 meetings per year with Russian counterparts from the Foreign Ministry. We discuss issues related to foreign policy, certain regions or particular directions. This refers to such issues as the situation in the Middle East or security policy," Cassis said.

"Thanks to these meetings, our personal relations develop and there are numerous direct communication channels. Besides, there is good cooperation between the parliaments: last year Chairman of Russia’s State Duma Vyacheslav Volodin paid a visit to Bern, and a year earlier Chairman of the National Council, the lower house of our parliament, Jurg Stahl, visited Moscow and St. Petersburg," he noted.

Bilateral relations are developing intensively, he said, noting that 200 Swiss companies operating in Russia have created 42,000 jobs. Aeroexpress trains traveling to Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport are made by a Swiss company, Cassis added.

The top Swiss diplomat, who is on an official visit to Russia, noted that his trip to Moscow coincided with the opening of the Swiss Embassy’s buildings. "I’m very glad about this: Switzerland’s Embassy in Moscow is one of the most important and largest in the network of our diplomatic missions. For the first time, all participants of the work to promote Switzerland’s interests in Russia: the diplomatic and consular mission and the Swiss Business Hub Russia are located under one roof, and this is very good," he said. "In addition to opening a new Embassy, this visit to Russia will allow me to meet again with the head of Russian diplomacy, Mr. Lavrov. Since I assumed office in November 2017, I have been meeting with my [Russian] counterpart for the fourth time already. "