On Russian President Vladimir Putin's Africa Day Greetings
On the occasion of Africa Day, observed on May 25, Vladimir Putin, the President of Russia, sent a message of greetings to the heads of state and government of the countries of Africa.
The message reads in part:
"In the last few years African countries have been becoming ever more active participants of worldwide political, economic and humanitarian processes. They make a noticeable contribution to international cooperation and to the elaboration of comprehensive measures for the promotion of global stability and security.
"Russia highly assesses the efforts by the states of Africa to overcome the problems facing the continent. In the first place - in tackling such an important task as the settlement of local armed conflicts. Of particular importance here is the peacekeeping activities of the African community as well as the coordinating role of the African Union and its Peace and Security Council and of leading sub-regional associations.
"We welcome the focus of the African countries on the implementation of the New Partnership for Africa (NEPAD) program. The economic and social development of the continent will largely depend on the resoluteness and consistency of steps in this direction. For its part Russia is ready to continue to render Africa necessary assistance, including within projects under the auspices of the Untied Nations, the G8, and other multilateral forums and organizations.
"An important and integral part of Russia's foreign policy is the development of political dialogue and mutually beneficial cooperation with the African states in the trade, economic, scientific, technological and cultural fields. We are convinced that the close joint work will help us use the significant potential of our partnership more fully."