Russian foreign policy
Russian policy in Africa
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     Africa Day Celebration

     May 25, 2001

     On May 25 on behalf of Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Igor Ivanov a reception was held for the heads of the diplomatic missions of African states accredited in Moscow on the occasion of Africa Day, annually marked ever since the Organization of African Unity was founded on this day in 1963. Taking part in it on the Russian side were State Duma deputies, and the representatives of a number of Russian agencies and organizations and of scientific, business and public circles.

     Speaking at the reception, Vasily Sredin, Russia's State Secretary and Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, noted that on the eve of this significant date Russian President Vladimir Putin had sent a congratulatory message to the heads of state and government of the African countries. It stresses the readiness of Russia to actively contribute further to comprehensive solution of the problems facing the African countries, and expresses hope for the unfolding through joint efforts of the rich potential of Russian-African partnership, the building-up of political dialogue and the onward development of mutually beneficial cooperation in the trade, economic, scientific, technical, cultural and other fields.

     Sredin cordially congratulated the heads of the diplomatic missions of African countries on Africa Day, noting that this significant date is for Russia, above all, a symbol of solidarity and cooperation with the countries of one of the most dynamic and distinctive regions of the world, and embodies the friendship and understanding between our peoples. He expressed satisfaction with the intensification of political dialogue, as well as with the appreciable shifts in fleshing out our economic relations.

     Russian-African partnership serves the mutual long-term interests, it was stressed, and can help strengthen the role of Africa as an important and integral part of an emerging multipolar world pattern living up to the expectations of all countries and peoples.

     Speaking in reply, doyen of the African group of the diplomatic corps in Moscow and Ambassador of the Republic of Mali Abdoulaye Charles Danioko spoke out for the further development of relations of cooperation between Russia and African countries.

     The reception passed in a warm and friendly atmosphere.

     On the eve of May 24 as part of the events to mark Africa Day a formal meeting was held at the RF Government's Center for International and Cultural Cooperation. State Secretary and Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Vasily Sredin, representatives of the diplomatic corps, the Russian public and scientific circles, and diplomatic service veterans spoke at it.

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