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Russia backs India for U.N. Council seat

Thursday 26 May 2005, by RADYUHIN*Vladimir

`This will ensure that there are no complications after demilitarisation’

MOSCOW: Russia has strongly backed India in its bid for a permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council in what is seen as the most substantive result of President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam’s just concluded state visit to this country.

"Assessing India as an important member of the international community, the Russian Federation reaffirmed its support to India as a deserving and strong candidate for the permanent membership of the UN Security Council," a Joint Statement issued on Thursday said on the results of the Indian President’s visit to Russia on May 22-25.

Russia’s support has added significance because of its timing in the light of the pitching battle for a U.N. Security Council reform.

Expressing satisfaction with wide-ranging Indo-Russian ties the Joint Statement said the sides agreed to "further deepen cooperation" in a number of "key areas such as science and technology, peaceful uses of atomic energy and outer space and defence."

India’s envoy to Russia said President Kalam’s visit was rich on substance, not only ceremony, and the broad-ranging and detailed discussions he had during a 40-minute meeting with President Vladimir Putin will help further upgrade strategic ties between India and Russia.

Goodwill

"The visit consolidated the goodwill and understanding that already exist between the two countries and reinforced the special quality of our ties," Ambassador Kanwal Sibal told The Hindu that "it will give a particular boost to our scientific and technological ties for which India is ready to commit considerable resources."

The Joint Statement hailed President Kalam’s visit as "a new major step at the highest level to the progressive consolidation of Indo-Russian strategic partnership."

"Both Sides noted that the strategic partnership between them served their long-term national interests, provided the impetus to enhance their multifaceted bilateral cooperation and contributed to regional and international peace and security," the Joint Statement said noting that the two countries shared "identical or similar" views on most international issues.

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