Russian foreign policy
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President Vladimir Putin presented the Federation Council with a proposal on sending a Russian Armed Forces military contingent to take part in the United Nations peacekeeping operations in Sudan, December 21, 2005

Mr Putin's letter to Chairman of the Federation Council Sergei Mironov reads, in particular:

"The above-mentioned operation (the UN mission in Sudan) is being carried out in accordance with UN Security Council resolution 1590 of March 24, 2005, which provides for an international military contingent to be deployed in the Republic of Sudan. UN Security Council resolution 1627 of September 23, 2005, extends the UN mission's mandate for a further six months. The UN Secretary General has requested that we send a Russian Federation Armed Forces military contingent to take part in the UN peacekeeping operations in the Republic of Sudan.

The contingent sent to take part in the peacekeeping operations would number up to 200 military servicemen. In accordance with the UN Secretary General's request, it is proposed that we send four Mi-8MT (MTB) military transport helicopters with the according arms, ammunition, military equipment and other necessary items.

The Russian military contingent will be part of the UN peacekeeping forces in the area designated by the UN Security Council for peacekeeping operations in the Republic of Sudan. The contingent's duties will be to provide helicopter support for the rapid reaction forces, ensure air transport of aero-mobile reserves, carry out medical and evacuation work on a round-the-clock basis, carry out air surveillance and search and rescue operations and transport UN property and personnel to the deployment points and bases.

The Russian Federation Armed Forces military contingent will be directly subordinate to the commander of the UN mission forces in Sudan.

The Russian military contingent will take part in the UN peacekeeping operations for the time period set by the UN Security Council for peacekeeping operations in the Republic of Sudan, that is, until March 24, 2006. Should the Security Council prolong the duration of the operations the Russian military contingent's participation in the operations will also be prolonged if this remains expedient for Russia's interests. Personnel rotation in the Russian military contingent will take place at least twice a year.

The financial expenses connected to the Russian military contingent's participation in the peacekeeping operations will be settled according to the provisions of the Russian Federation's legislation and will be subsequently reimbursed by the United Nations".

Mr Putin signed an order appointing First Deputy Foreign Minister Valery Loshchinin and Commander-in-Chief of the Air Force General Vladimir Mikhailov to be his official representatives during examination of this issue.

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