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    MOSCOW, February 3 (RIA Novosti correspondent Alexander Kovalev) - Director General of the Russian Space Research Agency (Rosaviakosmos), Yuri Koptev arrived in Paris on Monday to participate in talks with the leadership of the European Space Agency (ESA).

    Rosaviakosmos officials said, "this is a consulting trip before the February 4 meeting of the ESA Supreme Council at the level of ministers."

    Yuri Koptev will discuss the construction of a Russian complex for launching Soyuz booster rockets from the Kourou space center in French Guiana with his European counterparts.

    Mr. Koptev also plans to discuss U.S. President George Bush's latest space initiatives concerning the termination of shuttle flights to the International Space Station (ISS) and the exploration of the Moon and Mars with the ESA top officials.

    At the meeting with the ESA leadership, the sides will also discuss the launch date of the new European transport space ship ATV, which has a similar load capacity to the Russian Progress transport spacecraft, from the ISS.

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