Ukraine foreign minister in Belarus on first visit after appointment

MINSK. Oct 20 (Interfax) - Signs of coinciding of positions are seen in relations between Belarus and Ukraine, Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko said in Minsk to Ukrainian Foreign Minister Petro Poroshenko, who had arrived in Belarus on his first foreign visit following his appointment.

"Our cooperation is not meant to harm anyone, of course. You must have noticed that some are vexed by it. I don't think they should be," Lukashenko told Poroshenko.

Lukashenko said he was ready to discuss "all issues that interest Belarus and Ukraine," adding, "there are things on which the interests of our states coincide absolutely."

Strategic questions must be given a concrete content, he also said. " Positive progress can be seen in tackling strategic issues, but they are being filled with a concrete content too slowly. We understand the reasons and circumstances of that. The Ukrainian president talks about that, but this can be overcome," Lukashenko said.

Ukraine and Belarus must "demonstrate progress in both political and economic cooperation," Poroshenko said in turn. "We are talking today about a strategic character of cooperation [with Belarus]," he said.

"I am convinced that the package of proposals prepared for the visit will be interesting, and it will be implemented during your visit to Ukraine," the Ukrainian foreign minister said, noting that Lukashenko would hopefully pay a visit to Ukraine soon.

Lukashenko congratulated Poroshenko on his appointment as foreign minister. Many pin certain hopes on this appointment, he said. "I can see the mass media's efforts to announce your visit to Moscow. Russia has plucked at you like a straw," the Belarusian president said



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