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Kuwait Tells Lavrov it Will Follow Up with Russian Prisoner’s Case

Kuwait Tells Lavrov it Will Follow Up with Russian Prisoner’s Case

Thursday, 7 March, 2019 - 08:30
Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah with Sergei Lavrov on Wednesday, March 6, 2019 in Kuwait. (Asharq Al-Awsat)

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who is on a Gulf tour, visited on Wednesday Kuwaiti Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah.

Lavrov and the Emir discussed regional and international issues, and tackled the case of Russian prisoner Maria Lazareva, who has been jailed on embezzlement charges.

In a joint press conference with his Kuwaiti counterpart, Sheikh Sabah al-Khaled al-Sabah, the Russian FM stressed that discussions with Kuwait included a Russian request to guarantee Lazareva’s full rights.

According to Russian media, Lavrov said he discussed with Kuwaiti officials Lazareva’s case and “expressed hope that all her legal rights would be guaranteed in line with Kuwaiti laws that are derived from international conventions.”

“Russia is always concerned about its citizens’ fate... I submitted this request, and it was taken into consideration by the Kuwaiti side, which accepted it and promised to adopt our proposals," he added.

Sabah al-Khaled, for his part, said Kuwait respects international conventions. “We are following up with this case by virtue of friendship with Russia, and we hope next week to appeal the verdict.”

Kuwaiti authorities arrested Lazareva in November 2017. She is managing director of KGL Investment in Kuwait and was sentenced to 10 years in prison in May 2018 for embezzlement with a financial penalty worth millions of dollars.

Lavrov described his country’s relations with Kuwait as developing in all fields, including technical military cooperation. He said both countries have been working to implement joint investment projects.

The Kuwaiti FM said his country is proud of the level of bilateral cooperation and coordination in the Security Council and the joint work between their delegations to the United Nations, especially with regard to regional issues.

After Kuwait, on the fourth stop of his Gulf tour, Lavrov met Wednesday with UAE Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan in Abu Dhabi.

Both sides stressed that relations between their countries continue to develop and prosper in all fields.

Sheikh Abdullah said he looks forward for more bilateral cultural cooperation, adding that the UAE cooperates with Russia in facing all kinds of challenges.

He noted the increased number of Russian tourists in the UAE and the rise in the level of mutual trade.

“Russia and the UAE have common stances on settling disputes in the region,” Lavrov said.

“It is impossible to boost security without settling these conflicts and crises politically and diplomatically, in accordance with the international law,” he stressed.

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