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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Russia Promises Siberia Flight Deal

The government said Tuesday it would honor a deal agreed with the European Union last year to phase out charges for European airlines flying over Siberia.

The EU regards the arrangement as a done deal but Russia has not signed it and it is unlikely to be ready in time for an EU-Russia summit later this week.

Sergei Yastrzhembsky, the Kremlin's top adviser on relations with the EU, said in an interview the deal is not being held up artificially but that internal procedures would take time to complete.

"It will be signed in the near future, but it is necessary that we complete our internal procedure. No one is going to hold this up artificially," Yastrzhembsky said. "We respect these agreements and are not putting them in doubt."

He declined to put a firm date on when his government would give its formal approval.