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Russian-Polish political relations are reaching the level of mature European cooperation
That was the assessment of the two countries' interaction in recent years the Russian Foreign Ministry's official spokesman Alexander Yakovenko gave in an interview with RIA Novosti. "Poland is an important, although not always easy partner of Russia in the European Union and NATO in war on terror. In recent years Russian-Polish political relations have been pragmatic and are reaching the level of mature European cooperation," Yakovenko said. The Polish leadership strongly and unequivocally denounced the terrorist attack on Beslan and expressed solidarity with Russia, he emphasized. At the same time, along with sympathy of Polish citizens, Polish mass media demonstrated a certain "anti-Russian bias" in covering the events, he pointed out. According to Mr. Yakovenko, the Russian and Polish leaders have established a straight and confidential dialogue. For example, the two leaders have met six times in the last four years. Alongside the regular meetings of heads of state and government, there are annual meetings of the Committee on the strategy of Russian-Polish relations headed by Foreign Ministers. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov had a conversation with his Polish counterpart Wlodzimierz Cimoszewicz within the recent session of the UN General Assembly in New York. "Taking into account Poland's accession to the EU and its claims for an important role in the expanded European Union the [forthcoming] talks will focus on the issues of developing partnership between Russia and the EU, where we expect Warsaw to take a more active and constructive stance. This is also true about cooperation within the Russia-NATO Council, and issues of European and international security in general. Despite the existing disagreements we can expect a fairly productive and constructive exchange of opinions on crises in different places of the world: in Iraq, Afghanistan, the Middle East, the Balkans and the Caucasus, as well as on disarmament and non-proliferation," Yakovenko said. President of Poland Aleksander Kwasniewski arrives in Russia with a working visit on September 28, 2004.
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