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Moscow denies barring NGO workers during G8 summit

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Igor Shuvalov, who is also Russia's representative, or sherpa, to the G8, said: "It is a myth that we will not allow representatives of non-governmental organizations into our territory. No one has given such orders."

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MOSCOW, May 16 (RIA Novosti) - Russia will not stop members of non-governmental organizations from entering the country to hold marches and demonstrations during the July summit of G8 leaders in St. Petersburg, a presidential aide said Thursday.

Igor Shuvalov, who is also Russia's representative, or sherpa, to the G8, said: "It is a myth that we will not allow representatives of non-governmental organizations into our territory. No one has given such orders."

"An order has been given to issue visas to everyone in good time, and not to put any obstacles in the way of holding marches," he said.

However, Shuvalov said President Vladimir Putin had ordered the Foreign Ministry to instruct Russian embassies to obtain lists from local authorities of people planning to visit the country in July for events to take place alongside the meeting of leaders form the world's industrialized countries.

Lists will also be obtained from foreign authorities of individuals who do not have the approval of their own governments to enter Russia - "individuals who could provoke unpleasantness of a particular kind," the presidential aide said.

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