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Poland: Sikorski, Lavrov and Westerwelle discuss Syria and Kaliningrad02:19

Poland: Sikorski, Lavrov and Westerwelle discuss Syria and Kaliningrad

Poland, Warsaw
May 10, 2013 at 19:03 GMT +00:00 · Published

Poland: Sikorski, Lavrov and Westerwelle discuss Syria and Kaliningrad

The foreign ministers of Poland, Germany and Russia met on Friday in Warsaw and agreed that the NATO-Russia council will continue to seek to dispose of old ammunition in Kaliningrad. They discussed both international and national issues including the Syrian crisis, local border traffic and other regional issues.

German Foreign Minister, Guido Westerwelle, said that he welcomes the American and Russian agreement to convene at the upcoming international conference on Syria. He sees the conference as an opportunity to find a political solution to the conflict in Syria and declared Germany's willingness to participate in this endeavour. He also said that the 'illegal flow' of international weapons to Syria needs to be stopped as it undermines the ability to find a solution.

On Tuesday, Russia and the United States agreed that if possible, before the end of May they will convene at an international peace conference aimed at ending the internal conflict in Syria.

Russian Foreign Minister, Siergiej Lavrov, was asked whether Russia plans to supply weapons to Syria, to which he responded: "Russia does not plan to sell weapons to Syria. Russia has long signed contracts to supply Syria with air defense systems, and has all but delivered on them already. That kind of export is not prohibited by any international act."

Westerwelle admitted that the Syrian weapons topic raised controversy among the three ministers, as Germany believes that all arms deliveries should be abolished. He also mentioned that it was necessary to discuss the allegations about the use of chemical weapons in Syria and proposed the bringing in of UN experts into the country.

The Polish Foreign Minister, Radoslaw Sikorski, stressed after the meeting that Germany was very helpful because the joint decision of the EU was needed in order to come to an agreement with Russia about local border traffic. The recent agreement strengthens Poland's determination to eliminate barriers of movement for people travelling across borders. This includes visa-free travel with all neighbours of Poland, like the Russian Federation. Already the Polish Consulate in Kaliningrad has issued 53,000 local border traffic cards.

Lavrov also positively discussed the agreement on small border traffic and said that despite the crisis in the Euro zone, the trade between the three countries has increased and exceeded $100 billion, which is a quarter of all trade between Russia and the European Union.

The head of the Russian Foreign Ministry described the work of three ministers as very useful and announced that the next meeting of the Polish, German and Russian foreign ministers will be held next year in St. Petersburg.

Poland: Sikorski, Lavrov and Westerwelle discuss Syria and Kaliningrad02:19
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Poland: Sikorski, Lavrov and Westerwelle discuss Syria and Kaliningrad

The foreign ministers of Poland, Germany and Russia met on Friday in Warsaw and agreed that the NATO-Russia council will continue to seek to dispose of old ammunition in Kaliningrad. They discussed both international and national issues including the Syrian crisis, local border traffic and other regional issues.

German Foreign Minister, Guido Westerwelle, said that he welcomes the American and Russian agreement to convene at the upcoming international conference on Syria. He sees the conference as an opportunity to find a political solution to the conflict in Syria and declared Germany's willingness to participate in this endeavour. He also said that the 'illegal flow' of international weapons to Syria needs to be stopped as it undermines the ability to find a solution.

On Tuesday, Russia and the United States agreed that if possible, before the end of May they will convene at an international peace conference aimed at ending the internal conflict in Syria.

Russian Foreign Minister, Siergiej Lavrov, was asked whether Russia plans to supply weapons to Syria, to which he responded: "Russia does not plan to sell weapons to Syria. Russia has long signed contracts to supply Syria with air defense systems, and has all but delivered on them already. That kind of export is not prohibited by any international act."

Westerwelle admitted that the Syrian weapons topic raised controversy among the three ministers, as Germany believes that all arms deliveries should be abolished. He also mentioned that it was necessary to discuss the allegations about the use of chemical weapons in Syria and proposed the bringing in of UN experts into the country.

The Polish Foreign Minister, Radoslaw Sikorski, stressed after the meeting that Germany was very helpful because the joint decision of the EU was needed in order to come to an agreement with Russia about local border traffic. The recent agreement strengthens Poland's determination to eliminate barriers of movement for people travelling across borders. This includes visa-free travel with all neighbours of Poland, like the Russian Federation. Already the Polish Consulate in Kaliningrad has issued 53,000 local border traffic cards.

Lavrov also positively discussed the agreement on small border traffic and said that despite the crisis in the Euro zone, the trade between the three countries has increased and exceeded $100 billion, which is a quarter of all trade between Russia and the European Union.

The head of the Russian Foreign Ministry described the work of three ministers as very useful and announced that the next meeting of the Polish, German and Russian foreign ministers will be held next year in St. Petersburg.