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NEWS BRIEFS

Agreements with Russia should be revised soon

Foreign Affairs Minister Eduard Kukan told the press that the revision of agreements concluded with Russia could be finished in two weeks.

Slovakia will try to redress its foreign trade deficit with Russia by increasing Slovak exports there, Kukan said. The Slovak cabinet will also strive to significantly limit arms imports from Russia as repayment of Russian debt.

At a recent meeting with the Russian Ambassador to Slovakia, Alexander Aksenok, Finance Minister Brigita Schmögnerová said that Slovakia would prefer to import coal, natural gas, or nuclear fuel instead of arms. She told Aksenok that the government is continuing to review the merits of the S-300 missile system for the Slovak Army that the previous government planned to import.

"These are serious decisions with an effect on Slovakia's aspirations to become a member of NATO," she said.

Kukan said the March visit of Slovak Foreign Ministry State Secretary Jan Figeľ to Russia might solve some of the issues that remain open.

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