Russian defence minister starts visit to YU

BELGRADE, December 23 (Itar-Tass) - Russian Defense Minister Igor Sergeyev started his working visit to Yugoslavia on Thursday.

In an interview with the Yugoslav daily Politika, Sergeyev said his talks with the Yugoslav officials would focus on military and technological cooperation between the two countries rather than arms deliveries to Yugoslavia.

"The U.N Security Council embargo on supplying arms and military hardware to Yugoslavia makes it impossible to consider this issue in any practical dimension at this point. Nevertheless, we can talk about promising areas to develop military and technological cooperation with Yugoslavia after the U.N Security Council lifts its sanctions," Sergeyev told Politika on Thursday.

He also stressed the Russian Defense Ministry was ready to exchange delegations with the Yugoslav army and air force and to develop other forms of cooperation, including mutual calls by Yugoslav and Russian warships at the two countries' ports.

Sergeyev stressed the NATO aggression against Yugoslavia was a manifestation of the U.S. military and political dictatorship and has created a dangerous international precedent of force interference in the internal affairs of sovereign states.

[URL may be different next day if article is archived]