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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Presidents Trade Words Over Union

The single money-printing center of the Russia-Belarus Union should be in Moscow, President Vladimir Putin told a news conference Wednesday.

Putin also said he welcomed Belarussian President Alexander Lukashenko's conviction that the two countries should keep on with the unification process.

"We would settle for any variant," Putin said. "But it is only necessary to undertake concrete actions."

Lukashenko, on the other hand, lashed out at Putin on Tuesday for changing the terms of the proposed union and threatened to charge Russia higher fees for use of its military facilities and transit routes.

Lukashenko said Russia enjoys free use of military facilities on Belarussian territory and hinted that he had the right to charge Moscow for use of the sites.

He added that Belarus could charge an additional $800 million to $1 billion in transit fees for Russian oil and gas that is transported across Belarussian territory to Europe. (Prime-Tass, AP)