PM travelling to Moscow on Tuesday in wake of dispute over Russian warship
Prime Minister Joseph Muscat will be travelling to Moscow to meet Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev at the Kremlin, The Malta Independent on Sunday has learnt.
This meeting will be held in the wake of the recent decision by the Maltese government not to
allow a Russian warship to enter Maltese waters for refuelling. The Russian Navy Ship RFS Dubna was initially given the green light to dock in Malta between 4 and 6 November, but this concession was later withdrawn.
The withdrawal was made after pressure was exerted by the US and the UK, given that the ship
was possibly on its way to the Middle East to support Russian and Syrian air strikes in Syria. Foreign Minister George Vella later said that Malta took orders from no-one, but had withdrawn its permission on humanitarian grounds.
Russian news agency Tass reported last Friday that the Russian government was not pleased
with Malta’s turnabout.
“A statement by Malta’s Foreign Minister George Vella falls out of line with any diplomatic routine though he stated it many times that the decision was passed independently without any external pressure proceeding from the purposes, which our military pursue,” the Russian Foreign Ministry stated.