Ambassador Meles Alem, spoksperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, speaking at a press briefing in Addis Ababa.

Russian Foreign Minister Visit to Ethiopia Fruitful: MoFA

ADDIS ABABA – Ethiopian officials’ discussions with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s visit to Ethiopia have been fruitful, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

During his biweekly Press briefing today, the Ministry’s spokesperson Ambassador Meles Alem also spoke about the ongoing registration of foreigners who are living in Ethiopia without proper documents.

Regarding Russian FM’s visit, the Spokesperson said Lavrov held met with President Sahle-Work Zewde and Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Demeke Mekonnen.

The discussions, he said, were focused on cementing bilateral ties, especially in trade, technology transfer, agricultural, and energy sectors, and have resulted in fruitful outcomes.

Russia has decided to change Ethiopia’s debt owed to the former USSR with a “Dept for Development package”, according to the spokesperson.

The move intends to help Ethiopia boost the technical capability of the Melkawakena Power plant and equip Balcha Hospital with modern medical equipment, he added.

Meles also said the two sides agreed to hold a joint Ethiopian-Russia Commission meeting in the coming year and sign new agreements, in addition to expediting the ratification and implementation of the previous ones.

Ambassador Meles also mentioned that Lavrov expressed Russia’s readiness to support Africa’s bid to hold a permanent seat at the UN Security Council during his discussion with President Sahle-Work.

During the press briefing, the spokesperson also spoke about the commencement of the Ethiopian Immigration and citizenship service’s registration of foreigners living in Ethiopia without proper documents.

According to Meles, the government immigration office has so far registered 58,833 foreign nationals who were residing in Ethiopia without proper documents.

The foreigners are mainly from Canada, the USA, Congo, Nigeria, Yemen, Syria, Sudan, South Sudan, China, Eritrea, Burundi, Ghana, Bangladesh, India, Liberia, Cameroon, and Italy.

The first round registration would stay until 02 August 2022, he said, further calling on the foreign nationals to use the window of opportunity to register on time.