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    WHY IS US STATE SECRETARY HEADING FOR MOSCOW?

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    MOSCOW, January 25 (RIA Novosti) - US State Secretary Colin Powell will arrive in Moscow on a routine visit tonight.

    Russian presidential administration deputy head Sergei Prikhodko said Russian President Vladimir Putin is expected to receive Powell.

    A Russian foreign ministry source said Colin Powell's visit will make it possible for the sides to discuss a whole range of issues in bilateral relations.

    Key regional problems will be touched upon at Powell's talks in Moscow, including the situation in Iraq and its economy restoration, the Middle East settlement, counter terrorism issues.

    An important topic will be the issues of non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and security. The talk will be about the situation around Iran, and ways to resolve the nuclear problem of the DPRK. The Russian side would like to receive from Washington more detailed information on international inspections that will be conducted in Libya, as well as cooperation in blocking the possible leakage of nuclear components from Pakistan.

    Issues of fulfilling the Russo-American Agreement on Strategic Offensive Reductions and the Declaration of Strategic Partnership will be considered at the meeting.

    According to the Russian foreign ministry source, the situation on the post-Soviet territory will be discussed as well.

    The American side reported that Powell intends to discuss with Russian representatives the situation in Georgia, including the issues of withdrawal from that country of two Russian military bases. Moscow says Russia can resolve this issue with Georgia bilaterally and does not need any mediators.

    The US state secretary will discuss issues of bilateral trade and economic cooperation in Moscow too. The talk will be about interaction in the sphere of energy, as well as enhancement of investment cooperation.

    Powell's visit will last until January 27.

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