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    RUSSIA HAILS PA'S WILLINGNESS TO SIGN CEASEFIRE WITH ISRAEL

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    MOSCOW, JANUARY 21, 2004, (RIA NOVOSTI correspondent Yulia Troitskaya) - Russia applauds the Palestinian leadership's stated willingness to sign a cease-fire agreement with Israel and to get down to implementing the Road Map peace plan, Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov said.

    Appearing before reporters after talks with his visiting Palestinian counterpart, Nabil Shaath, Mr. Ivanov said: "It was very important to us to receive such assurances from the PA leadership." He revealed plans to hold consultations shortly with the Foreign Ministers of France and Italy and with the US State Secretary so as to coordinate efforts toward the Road Map's implementation.

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