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Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov heads to Sri Lanka for high-level talks


Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov heads to Sri Lanka for high-level talks

sri lanka russia
Photo: Russian MoD

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will meet with his Sri Lankan counterpart Dinesh Gunawardena today for a discussion on military and economic cooperation between the two countries.

As the US continues to gradually withdraw from Afghanistan, Russia has been active in bolstering its presence in the Middle East and South Asian. Lavrov has recently visited Turkey, Syria and now Sri Lanka to forge military and economic relationships.

Moscow is expected to seek an agreement with Colombo that allows a Russian military presence in Sri Lanka, given the island nation’s strategic proximity to the heavily worked trade routes that pass through the Indian Ocean and the Strait of Hormuz.

Sri Lanka may look to Russia for defence support, particularly regarding defence technology and counterterrorism assistance.

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Photo: Susan Walsh/AP

On the economic front, Russia will likely try to add to existing bilateral agreements in numerous economic sectors including tourism, fisheries and space research. Lavrov has made clear that he intends to take actions to maintain the considerable trade growth that the two states have enjoyed in the last two years; trade has increased around 20% annually.

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