Latvia Interested In Promoting Positive Relations Between Belarus, NATO - Prime Minister, Arturs Krisjanis Karins,

Latvia Interested in Promoting Positive Relations Between Belarus, NATO - Prime Minister, Arturs Krisjanis Karins,

Latvia is interested in promoting positive relations between Belarus and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the Baltic country's Prime Minister, Arturs Krisjanis Karins, said on Thursday

MINSK (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 16th January, 2020) Latvia is interested in promoting positive relations between Belarus and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the Baltic country's Prime Minister, Arturs Krisjanis Karins, said on Thursday.

The prime minister is currently paying a working visit to Minsk. Later on Thursday, Karins is set to hold talks with senior Belarusian officials to discuss bilateral relations, including cooperation in environmental protection, transport and logistics, and pressing regional issues.

"We are highly interested in Latvia's role in not only strengthening relations between Latvia and Belarus but also [in boosting ties] between Belarus and the European Union, especially within the framework of the Eastern Partnership. And, of course, ... we are very interested in promoting positive relations between Belarus and NATO," Karins said during his meeting with his Belarusian counterpart, Sergei Roumas.

Karins noted that Minsk was a very important neighbor for Riga and Latvia was pleased to see "independent, stable and prosperous Belarus." In addition, the prime minister said that he expected to help strengthen bilateral ties during his visit.

In his turn, Roumas said that the two countries should develop "constructive and pragmatic dialogue and actively use advantages of their geopolitical position" since they were neighbors and both had the potential for high-capacity transit.

In mid-October, Belarusian Deputy Foreign Minister Andrei Dapkiunas said at a meeting with NATO Assistant Secretary General for Emerging Security Challenges Antonio Missiroli that the country was ready for cooperation with NATO on the basis of mutual respect and equality. The Belarusian diplomat also noted a gradual improvement of relations between the parties.

At the same time, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has expressed his concerns about the alliance's activity near the country's border, warning that Minsk may resort to some countermeasures. These concerns were related, in particular, to the United States' deployment of armored vehicles to Lithuania and the NATO Defender-Europe 20 military drills that are to take place across eastern and central Europe in the spring and are expected to be the largest deployment of US troops and equipment to Europe in 25 years.

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