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    VLADIMIR PUTIN TO VISIT CHINA IN AUTUMN

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    MOSCOW, March 12, 2004. (RIA Novosti). The Russian President's official visit to China in early October will be timed to the 55th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries, Russian ambassador to China Igor Rogachev told a Beijing newspaper.

    According to him, intensive work on organization of other visits lies ahead.

    In connection with the anniversary of diplomatic relations the Russian and Chinese leaders decided to proclaim 2004 "The year of friendship of Russian and Chinese youth", the ambassador said. Young businessmen, parliamentarians and journalists are to exchange visits. Children's summer camps will be open on the Russian-Chinese border. Exhibitions of young artists, contests, conferences and sports competitions will be held. Contacts between Russian and Chinese regions and twin-cities are planned, as well, Rogachev said.

    In his words, Russian-Chinese relations are a complicated branchy mechanism, which is naturally facing many problems. However, "the main thing is that our countries are trying to solve any problems in the spirit of confidence and mutual respects. There are no forbidden issues today and we can discuss everything with Chinese colleagues with no fear of political tensions," the Russian diplomat stressed.

    Speaking about the influence of forthcoming presidential elections on Russia's foreign and domestic policy, the ambassador said that "Russian diplomats should be guided by the creation of favorable conditions to provide security and progressive social-economic development of the country".

    "The consolidation of multi-polar world order on the basis of the international law and under the UN central role" will help to fulfill this task," the Russian ambassador said.

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