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Russian Minister Plays Down Threat To Ban Belarusian Dairy Products

Moscow has played down its threat to suspend dairy imports from Belarus, Russia's largest supplier.

Russia's agricultural-oversight agency, Rosselkhoznadzor, said on June 22 that it would have to impose restrictions on all or some dairy imports from Belarus if measures to address poor-quality supplies were not taken.

"I think Rosselkhoznadzor overreacted a bit," Russian Agriculture Minister Aleksandr Tkachev later said.

"We pointed out problems to certain producers, not about all volumes of milk," he added.

According to the minister, Russia is currently facing a deficit of milk and "it would be rather challenging to do without Belarus."

In Minsk, Belarusian Agriculture Minister Leanid Zayats said he saw no quality problems, adding that "this issue is made up."

Based on reporting by Reuters, RT, and TASS