Russian defence minister: No plans to overhaul terms for Russian fleet presence in Ukraine
April 26, 2012, 10:19 a.m. |
UKRAINE, Sevastopol : Russian sailors march near their Navy vessel in the bay of the Ukrainian city Sevastopol, the main base of the Russian Black Sea Fleet on September 6, 2011. Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov has denied plans to overhaul the terms for the deployment of Russia's Black Sea Fleet on Ukrainian territory in the foreseeable future.
Moscow - Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov has denied plans to overhaul the terms for the deployment of Russia's Black Sea Fleet on Ukrainian territory in the foreseeable future.
"We do not have any information reaffirming Ukraine's plans to review or change anything. We will continue abiding by previously signed agreements," he told Interfax-AVN.
According to Serdyukov, recently appointed Ukrainian Defense Minister Dmytro Salamatin confirmed this during his first visit to Russia.
"He [Salamatin] has not made any statements that something should be reviewed or changed," the Russian minister said.
Serdyukov said that he and the Ukrainian minister had discussed, among other topics, the functioning of the Crimea-based NITKA Center, where ship-based aircraft pilots are trained, as well as the presence of the 31st test site in Feodosia.
"We instructed our experts to work harder on these issues," he said.
Serdyukov said he and Salamatin had developed trusting relations when the Ukrainian minister headed Ukrspecexport, Ukraine's state controlled exporter and importer of military and special-purpose products and services.
"He visited me several times, and we discussed different issues and met at weapons exhibitions, for example in Nizhny Tagil, where we discussed Ukraine's partial involvement in the modernization of T-72 tanks," the Russian minister said.
Ties between the Russian and Ukrainian Defense Ministries have been developing constructively in recent years, Serdyukov said.
"I do not think that something will change for the worse in this area in the foreseeable future," he added.