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    * A session of the Russian State Council on the implementation of priority national projects will be held at the Grand Kremlin Palace.

    * Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov will oversee the signing of a cooperation agreement between the ministry and Vneshekomombank (Foreign Economic Bank; 1:00 p.m.).

    * Russian Culture and Mass Communication Minister Alexander Sokolov will give a news conference on the results of his ministry's work in 2005 (11:00 a.m.).

    * A special two-day meeting of co-chairmen of the Joint Control Commission for the Georgian-South Ossetian conflict resolution will open. It will focus on the demilitarization of the conflict zone. Georgian State Minister for Separatist Conflicts Georgy Khaindrava, South Ossetian minister Boris Chochiyev and the Russian Foreign Ministry's Ambassador At Large Valery Kenyaikin will participate in the meeting.

    * The Federation Council will host a session of the upper house's council (10:00 a.m.).

    * Federation Council Speaker Sergei Mironov will give a news conference on the results of the chamber's work in 2005 (2:00 p.m.).

    * The news agency Interfax will host the following news conferences:

    - With Russian Emergency Situations Minister Sergei Shoigu on the results of the ministry's work during the past 15 years and the prevention of emergency situations for 2006 (11:30 a.m.);

    - with chairman of the State Duma international affairs committee Konstantin Kosachev on Russia's upcoming presidency in the G8 and the Council of Europe's Committee of Ministers (1:30 p.m.).

    * RIA Novosti will host the following news conferences:

    - with chairman of the State Duma committee for labor and social policy Andrei Isayev on the social results of 2005 and 2006 (11:00 a.m.);

    - with head of the Russian Pension Fund Gennady Batanov on the key trends of the fund's activities in 2006 (12:00 p.m.).

    * Head of the Federal Space Agency Anatoly Perminov will give a news conference on the results of the agency's work in 2005 and plans for 2006 (11:00 a.m.).

    * Leader of the Rodina (Homeland) party Dmitry Rogozin will give a news conference on the political results of 2005 and party's tasks in 2006 (12:00 p.m.).

    * The two-day, all-Russia forum on the education and healthy development of schoolchildren and students will open (3:00 p.m.).

    * The All-Russia Christmas Tree will be unveiled at a ceremony on Cathedral Square in the Moscow Kremlin (5:00 p.m.). Some 2,000 children from many Russian regions will attend.


    * A Buddhist center with the largest Buddha statue in Europe will open in Kalmykia's capital.


    * A two-day meeting of the expert group for the completion of draft agreements on the CIS council for humanitarian cooperation and the CIS interstate humanitarian cooperation fund will open.

    RIA Novosti holds a full copyright for all its published materials. Upon any republication of RIA Novosti materials reference to RIA Novosti is mandatory.

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