Foreign Minister holds press conference with Russian counterpart

Moscow, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayani, and the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, Sergey Lavrov, today held a press conference following the session of joint official session of talks they had held here, in the presence of the delegations of the two countries.

The Foreign Minister expressed his happiness at visiting the friendly Russian Federation, stressing the pride of the Kingdom of Bahrain in the close friendship that binds both countries under the directives of His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, and the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin.

He said that both sides had held a fruitful and session of talks that reflected the depth of the strong friendship relations between both countries, and their common desire to strengthen those relations and develop joint cooperation to serve common interests.

Dr. Al-Zayani added that both sides had discussed ways to develop bilateral cooperation in various fields, especially in the economic, investment, trade and cultural fields, and stressed the need to continue bilateral efforts to enhance friendship and joint cooperation, intensify the exchange of visits and official delegations to explore opportunities for increased cooperation in various fields.

He said that both sides had stressed the importance of holding the meeting of the joint committee for bilateral cooperation in trade, economy, science and technology, which is scheduled to hold its third meeting in the Kingdom of Bahrain in the end of this year, as well as the meeting of the joint business, given the importance of the role it plays in supporting the contribution of the private sector in both countries in increasing economic, commercial and investment cooperation.

The Foreign Minister stated that the Bahraini and Russian sides had studied the repercussions of the Covid-19, its effects on the health, economic and social conditions in all countries of the world, and the efforts made by both countries to confront the repercussions of the pandemic, pointing to the Kingdom of Bahrain's appreciation of the existing cooperation between the two countries in this field, especially in the field of producing the Russian Sputnik vaccine and providing it for use in the Middle East and North Africa.

He added that the talks had also dealt with the developments of the political and security situation in the region, and the wars and conflicts it is witnessing, and the state of instability and peace that has greatly affected the peoples of the region, explaining that both sides stressed the importance of work and concerted efforts to spread peace and security in the region.

In response to the journalists’ questions during the press conference, the Foreign Minister affirmed that the Kingdom of Bahrain-His Majesty the King, government and people- believes in peace and calls for its realisation in the region as a whole, a principle based on values that characterise the Bahraini people are the principles of coexistence, tolerance, respect for others, dialogue and harmony among all religions, hence the call of His Majesty the King to achieve peace in the region and to instill hope in the youth of countries affected by civil wars, by signing a declaration of support for peace with the State of Israel.

The Foreign Minister stressed the importance of agreement and joint action to achieve peace in the region, noting that this peace is based on a number of pillars, including the solution of the Palestinian issue, stressing the Kingdom of Bahrain's firm position calling for a solution to the issue based on the principle of the two-state solution and the Arab Peace Initiative, expressing thanks to the Russian Federation for its call to activate the work of the International Quartet for Peace in the Middle East, stressing the importance of the Quartet in coordination with the Arab countries in this regard. He also indicated that the GCC countries constitute another pillar of achieving the goal of peace, the statement of Al-Ula Summit was issued on the fifth of January this year, after the summit of their Majesties and Highnesses, leaders of the GCC countries and the Arab Republic of Egypt, which approved Al-Ula statement that it includes a number of obligations, including not violating the sovereignty of any of the member countries or threatening or targeting national cohesion in any way, and the countries' full stand in the face of what violates national and regional security, and bilateral meetings were held to deal with the causes that led to the crisis between Qatar and each country separately, provided that the bilateral committees meet within two weeks of signing the statement, noting that the Kingdom of Bahrain sent two invitations to Qatar to send a team to the Kingdom of Bahrain, and we are still waiting for the Qatari response.

As for the third pillar, it relates to dealing with the Iranian nuclear file, where the Foreign Minister affirmed that the position of the Kingdom of Bahrain is clear and known. We want a safe region in which peace and stability are achieved and in which everyone of different races and creeds coexist, and that it be a region free of weapons of mass destruction. Therefore, the Kingdom of Bahrain follows the Vienna negotiations with all interest, the Cooperation Council is informed of the progress of the negotiations.

The minister called for addressing Iran's destabilising practices in the region and its sponsorship of terrorism, terrorist militias and ballistic missile programme, and working to ensure that Iran does not develop nuclear weapons, and the importance of the safety of the Iranian nuclear programme in accordance with international standards and the requirements of the International Atomic Energy Agency, noting that all of the above will lead to achieving a secure and stable Middle East region that seeks development for all its countries, including Iran, calling on friends in the Russian Federation and other countries to support.

Sergey Lavrov expressed his pride in meeting the Foreign Minister, stressing that the discussions dealt with opening new areas of cooperation between both countries, including the educational and tourism fields, and joint work between the parliaments of both countries, and discussing the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding in the field of peaceful exploration of open space, in addition to agreeing on more coordination between the two sides at various international levels.

Lavrov also stressed that the Kingdom of Bahrain and the Russian Federation have a common vision regarding various international issues, including the absence of any alternative to a peaceful settlement of the situation in the Syrian Arab Republic, which requires taking urgent efforts to settle humanitarian issues in it and discussing some steps to be taken in order to return refugees to Syria.

He referred to the inalienable right of the Palestinians to establish their state based on the relevant resolutions, pointing to the need to activate efforts to put an end to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, beginning with direct negotiations between the Palestinians and Israelis and activating the work of the International Quartet in cooperation with the League of Arab States.

He also welcomed the development of the situation in the Gulf Cooperation Council, stressing the interest of the Russian Federation to present an updated version of the concept of collective security in the Gulf region.

Source: Bahrain News Agency