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Yemeni President Ali Abdallah Salah will make an official visit
Yemeni President Ali Abdallah Salah will make an official visit to Russia on February 24-26, the Kremlin announced on Friday.

According to the Yemeni Embassy in Moscow, the visit will include discussions on bilateral relations, as well as on trade and military cooperation.

Yemeni Ambassador to Russia Mohammed al-Hilali told RIA Novosti that Salah would meet with President Dmitry Medvedev, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov to discuss "perspectives in developing friendly relations between Russia and Yemen, and the development of cooperation in the spheres of economy, trade and military."

He added that investment opportunities in Yemen would be discussed with Russian companies working in the oil and gas sectors.

The ambassador also said Yemen supported Russia's aims in convening a Middle East peace conference in Moscow later this year, saying that "Yemen's position on the Middle East fully coincides with the position of our Russian friends."

Yemen's finance minister, Numan al-Suhaibi, was in Russia this week to meet with his Russian counterpart, Alexei Kudrin. The ambassador said they discussed the possibility of writing off Yemen's debt to Russia, adding that the "Russian side promised to look into the issue and if possible would give a positive answer."

This will be the fifth official visit of a Yemeni president to Russia, and the first since 2004.

Moscow and Sanaa signed their first friendship agreement on trade in 1928 and in 1955 set up diplomatic ties.


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