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Russia says to continue economic cooperation with Syria

(Xinhua)

08:12, August 24, 2012

MOSCOW, Aug. 23 (Xinhua) -- Some countries' unilateral sanctions against Syria would not hinder Russia's economic cooperation with the Middle East country, the Russian Foreign Ministry said Thursday.

"Unilateral sanctions against Syria imposed by a number of countries, of which Russia is widely known to be critical, are no reason for folding up joint economic programs and other plans," the ministry said in a statement on possible Russian loans to the crisis-torn country.

According to the ministry, Russia and Syria's economic relations have developed dynamically, despite the 18-month crisis in the country.

"Russia's cooperation with Syria in the oil and gas industries, energy, transport and agriculture were discussed during these contacts," the ministry said, taking note of the recent visits by Syrian government delegations.

"It should be noted that financial and investment cooperation, including the granting of loans, is nothing exceptional and is considered in accordance with existing procedures," the ministry said.

In August, Syrian government delegations led by Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs Qadri Jamil visited Moscow twice. During the first visit, talks were held with Russian officials and business leaders on ways to alleviate the consequences of Western sanctions against Syria.

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