On Friday, a high-level representative of the European Union affirmed that the European Council will not discuss the extension of sanction against Russian Federation during the meeting of next Monday. The source noted that the EU has time to make a decision on the matter until January 31 when sanctions are scheduled to expire. According to the source, the extension of economic sanctions is unlikely to be included in the agenda of the EU summit scheduled to be held in Brussels on 15th and 16th of December. On September 15, the European Union extended the ban of Russian and Ukrainian citizens and organizations for six months. The EU blacklist includes Russian officials, politicians, businessmen and law enforcement officers as well as almost all government members of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic and Lugansk People’s Republic.
At the British Ministry of International Development, Saudi Ambassador to Britain Prince Mohammed bin Nawaf and Abdullah Al-Rabeeah, KSRelief general supervisor, on Monday met with British government and nongovernment relief agencies to discuss about humanitarian activities in various countries. Al-Rabeeah said that the visit “comes as a confirmation of the pioneering role of Saudi Arabia in the area of relief and humanitarian aid under the leadership of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman”. He also emphasized the leading role being played by Saudi Arabia in relief work and humanitarian aid across the world, particularly in Yemen.
Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, who is visiting China, on Wednesday had a meeting with the Vice-Chairman of China’s Central Military Commission, Gen Xu Qiliang, in the course of which he proposed to have a detailed discussion about the situation in Syria, Iraq and Libya, as well as about the prospects for a bilateral cooperation in the military sphere and in defense-related technologies. Shoigu also met his Chinese counterpart, Chang Wanquan. During the meeting between the two Ministers, Shoigu affirmed that Military cooperation between Russia and China contributes to bring peace and stability on the Eurasian continent and beyond. China has been an active buyer of Russian defense technology. Just this month, Russia announced the delivery of S-400 defense systems to China by 2020. Beijing has also become the first state in the world authorized to buy the one of a kind system. According to media reports, the transaction amounted to around $3 billion. According to some experts, with relations between Moscow and the West deteriorating over the past two years, due to the Ukraine crisis and the following sanctions, Russia has seemed content to increase cooperation with its Chinese neighbor, and the entire region has profited from it.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has revealed plans to visit China in May 2017 at a meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Peru. Putin praised the rapid development of trade, industrial and high-tech ties between Moscow and Beijing. On Saturday, the two leaders met on the sidelines of the two-day Asian-Pacific Economic Forum (APEC). Putin said he has accepted an invitation to take part in events related to the implementation of Silk Road Economic Belt project, a large-scale initiative unveiled by Xi in 2013 that envisages the integration of trade and investment in Eurasia. One of the goals of a strategic Silk Road Economic Belt project is to link European and Asian countries with a transport, energy and a trade corridor. In June, Putin said he welcomes the project as a promising mutually beneficial initiative saying that wherever the road goes, it first runs through neighboring territories.
On Friday, Dmitry Peskov, Kremlin’s spokesman, affirmed that the Russian President Vladimir Putin is expected to hold talks with the leaders of China, Japan, Vietnam, the Philippines and Peru on November 19 on the sidelines of the APEC summit due to open in Peru’s capital of Lima, which Putin will attend. Peskov went on saying that the administrations of the Russian and US presidents did not arrange a separate meeting of Vladimir Putin and Barack Obama. However, the two leaders will be able to talk with each other in Peru. The Kremlin spokesman declined to specify the possible topics of the conversation, adding that the two leaders may discuss about “the most pressing issues.”
Azerbaijan’s Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov will pay a working visit to France on November 17. During the visit, Mammadyarov will meet with French Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development Jean-Marc Ayrault and discuss prospects of bilateral and multilateral cooperation. The current state of the negotiations on the settlement of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict will also be discussed at the meeting.