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BRUSSELS - Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics believes that NATO-Russia cooperation could be an additional incentive to improve bilateral relations between Latvia and Russia, reports LETA. The minister said that bilateral relations are also influenced by relations between NATO and Russia, as well as by relations between the European Union and Russia.
The minister added that there was much tension in relations with Russia this year, which was influenced by the language referendum, various announcements, unreasonable accusations of Nazism glorification by the Russian side, as well as other events. “This all led to a backdrop of relations which I believe has not been very positive,” Rinkevics said.
At the same time, the minister emphasized that Latvia is prepared to cooperate with Russia based on mutual respect. He said problems must be discussed in a “normal way,” and not with exchanges of announcements.
Commenting on NATO-Russia cooperation, Rinkevics pointed out that the discussion with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov was “constructive and positive” at the NATO-Russia Council meeting on Dec. 5. Various sides expressed the point of view that new areas of cooperation between NATO and Russia must be found.
Rinkevics was attending a NATO foreign ministers’ meeting in Brussels on Dec. 5.