Cypriot Finance Minister declines to comment on deal with Russia

Published March 21, 2013

| Reuters

Cypriot Finance Minister Michael Sarris declined to comment late on Thursday on whether he managed to secure a deal with Moscow after two-days-long talks.

"No comment," Sarris said when asked in his hotel lobby if a deal with Russia was secured. Sarris was meeting Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov on Thursday, after falling to agree on a deal on Wednesday.

Sarris was in Moscow for a second day to seek investments in Cyprus' banks and energy resources to reduce its debt burden, as well as an extension to an existing Russian bailout loan.

The European Union has given Cyprus till Monday to raise billions of euros for an international bailout or face the collapse of its financial system and likely euro exit.

(Reporting by Lidia Kelly and Maya Dyakina; Writing by Katya Golubkova; editing by Ron Askew)

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