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    RUSSIA'S DEPUTY FM TO VISIT AFRICA

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    MOSCOW, February 24 (RIA Novosti) - RIA Novosti was told in the Foreign Ministry's information and press department that on Tuesday Russia's Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Yuri Fedotov is leaving on a tour of a number of African countries.

    He will visit, in particular, Angola, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the South-African Republic and Lesoto.

    In the course of his trip the deputy minister will discuss topical international problems with these countries' leadership. Special attention will be paid to the strengthening of the UN's central role in the world arena, specifically in countering the global challenges and threats, first of all international terrorism.

    Besides that, in the course of the political consultations the Russian deputy minister plans to pay attention to regional problems, including settlement and prevention of crisis situations in Africa, and the questions of establishment of more effective interaction in this direction with the continental organization, the African Union.

    During his stay in the Congo, Fedotov will visit the UN peacekeeping mission which includes also Russian representatives.

    "We plan that the forthcoming talks will serve to heighten the level of the Russian-African political dialogue, to broaden mutually advantageous relations with the African countries in different fields, and to build up partnership in the interests of ensuring international peace and stability," the officials of the Russian foreign ministry's information and press department stated.

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