Armenian, Russian Foreign Ministers Meet at UN

NEW YORK—Armenian Foreign Minister Eduard Nalbandian met on Thursday with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov on the sidelines of the 65th session of the UN General Assembly for talks reportedly focusing on the bilateral relations of the two countries.

According to ArmRadio , the two discussed a defense agreement signed in August for extending the lease of a Russian military base in Armenia.

The meeting was among many Nalbandian conducted during his two-day visit to the General Assembly. According to the Foreign Ministry press office, he met with the foreign ministers of Kosovo, Estonia, Hungary, Singapore, Lithuania, Macedonia, and Cyprus.

According to ArmRadio, Nalbandian congratulated Kosovar Foreign Minister Skender Hyseni for the recent ruling by the International Court of Justice reaffirming Kosovo’s right to self determination.

In talks with his Estonian counterpart, Urmas Paet, Nalbandian discussed avenues of cooperation to strengthen Armenia’s relations with the European Union. The two also signed an agreement to remove the Visa regime on citizens in their respective countries with passports.

During his meeting with Hungarian Foreign minister Janos Martonyi, Nalbandian outlined his government’s desire to develop and strengthen ties with the European Partnership program. Nalbandian also invited Martonyi for an official visit to Armenia.

In talks with the Foreign Minister of Singapore, George Yeo, Nalbandian stressed cooperation in legal and economic and international affairs. The two scheduled a more extensive meeting on the issues at a later date in Singapore.

Nalbandian, meanwhile, discussed regional issues related to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict during his talks with Lithuanian Foreign Minister Audronius Azubalis, whose country will be assuming the chairmanship of the OSCE in 2011. The two diplomats held detailed discussions about the Nagorno-Karabakh peace process and the ongoing violation of the cease-fire regime by Azerbaijan.

He spoke later with the Foreign Minister of Macedonia, Antonio Milosoki, who serves as the chairman of the Council of Europe’s Committee of Ministers. The two ministers discussed preparations for an upcoming Council of Europe Forum on Democracy scheduled for October in Armenia.

Finishing-off his meetings, Nalbandian met with the Foreign Minister of Cyprus, Markos Kyprianou, to work out the details of a scheduled visit to Cyprus by Armenian President Serzh Sarkisian in early 2011. The two also spoke about the ongoing negotiations with Turkish-occupied Northern Cyprus.

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