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Russia proposes separate agreements with individual European Union countries on Moscow's imports of their meat
Russia proposes separate agreements with individual European Union countries on Moscow's imports of their meat, as a temporary measure to solve an ongoing dispute with the 25-nation bloc, the country's veterinary watchdog said Monday. The Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Inspection (Rosselkhoznadzor) came up with the proposal due to the EU's failure to provide guarantees of safe meat exports from Bulgaria and Romania, which are set to become EU members next month, the head of the service, Sergei Dankvert, said after a December 15 meeting with the Irish ambassador to Russia, Justin Harman. As well as its embargo on Romanian and Bulgarian meat imports, Moscow has banned meat from EU-member Poland over health concerns. Warsaw vetoed the start of talks on a new Russia-EU cooperation agreement in late November, in protest against the move. President Vladimir Putin explained that Russia had no claims against Polish meat, but objected to products of third countries being imported via Poland. Moscow's new proposal implies that the safety of meat exported to Russia must be guaranteed through bilateral deals with individual EU members, Dankvert said. "The ambassador said he intended to inform the Irish government about this proposal," Rosselkhoznadzor's statement said.
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