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    LINKS WITH INDIA IN RUSSIA'S POLITICAL FOREGROUND: AMBASSADOR

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    NEW DELHI, FEBRUARY 26 (RIA Novosti correspondent Valeri Sevryukov) - Ever closer contacts with India are among Russia's top foreign political priorities, reassured Ambassador Alexander Kadakin as he was addressing a seminar on, "Vladimir Putin: Four Years of Presidency. Achievements and Expectations".

    The seminar, in New Delhi's Russian Research and Cultural Centre, gathered spokesmen of the host country's political and academic circles, and community activists.

    Russia and India cherished the achievements of their previous contacts and met the mid-1990s with switching to an equal and mutually lucrative partnership from relations oriented on a bipolar global confrontation. The two countries signed a declaration of strategic partnership, October 2000, to formalise and strengthen a new purport of their contacts.

    Russia and India are taking into due account each other's goals and national interests, and their foreign political priorities are objectively close. All that makes their bilateral relations harmonious, and allows them to come to close stances on the most topical international issues. Strategic partnership is spreading into ever more fields, and is increasing influence on global affairs.

    Both countries are active in the disarmament and nonproliferation cause, and dynamically work against space militarised. They are seeking common answers to the latest threats and challenges, said Mr. Kadakin.

    Natalia Narochnitskaya, second in charge of the international affairs committee of the State Duma, parliament's lower house, had come from Moscow for the seminar. She addressed the gathering to sum up the preceding four years of Russia's foreign policies. Those years came as spectacular demonstration of Russia as a democratic country that pursues independent and predictable foreign policies. It has numerous strategic partners. The world has the utmost respect for Russia, and it is holding a deserved place among developed democracies, said the MP.

    The Russian Research and Cultural Centre timed to the seminar the opening of a photograph show: a retrospect of negotiations, conferences and other contacts of the two national leaders-Vladimir Putin and Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

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