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Russia, Bolivia look to strengthen military ties

By
Carlo Munoz
Russian Federation Minister for Foreign Affairs, Sergey Lavrov, pictured, and Bolivian Foreign Minister David Choquehuanca met Tuesday to discuss possible sales of Russian weaponry to the South American country. File photo by John Angelillo/UPI
Russian Federation Minister for Foreign Affairs, Sergey Lavrov, pictured, and Bolivian Foreign Minister David Choquehuanca met Tuesday to discuss possible sales of Russian weaponry to the South American country. File photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

MOSCOW, April 12 (UPI) -- Russia and Bolivia are holding negotiations over how Russian defense firms can help the South American nation revitalize its aging military arsenal over the next decade.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov met with Bolivian Foreign Minister David Choquehuanca in Moscow on Tuesday to discuss current and future foreign military sales requests filed by Sucre in support of that long-term rearmament plan.

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The two diplomats also discussed broader plans for bilateral cooperation on economic and political issues as well, according to Lavrov.

"Contacts are being prepared on the meeting results in connection with specific requests made by our Bolivian friends in the context of the approved in their country program for the re-equipment of the Bolivian armed forces within the next 10 years," Lavrov said at a press conference after the bilateral talks

"We'll try to take an active part in these affairs," he added. He did not comment on the specifics of the Bolivian requests for weapons and military hardware, or the potential value of those requests.

Lavrov did note the two diplomats discussed broader plans for bilateral cooperation on economic and political issues as well.

Both countries have established a working commission to discuss issues related to military cooperation, trade and potential investment partnerships, meeting last year to negotiate those issues.

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