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8 Mar, 2019 14:12

Czech president slams denial of entry for Russian official, calls it ‘stupid provocation’

Czech president slams denial of entry for Russian official, calls it ‘stupid provocation’

Czech President Milos Zeman slammed local authorities after a Russian government official wasn’t allowed into the country to participate in bilateral trade talks. Moscow earlier called the incident “a cynical stunt.”

The incident occurred on Monday as an official from the Russian Industry and Trade Ministry was denied entry at Prague Airport and had to return to Moscow. It has been speculated that he was on the unwanted list because of the alleged ties with Russian intelligence.

President Zeman, however, lambasted the case as a “stupid provocation.” The leader clarified that he knew the Russian delegation was considering leaving after the incident, which would mean the break-up of important talks.

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“This would have hindered our economic cooperation for a long time,” the Czech leader stated.

Earlier, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova described the situation as a “cynical and thought-out stunt.”

Still, the Russian delegation headed by Industry and Trade Minister Denis Manturov managed to hold talks with their Czech counterparts and was later received by President Zeman, who praised the strengthening of economic ties between the two states.

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