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    Medvedev urges EU to work with Russia on scrapping visa regime

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    President Dmitry Medvedev on Tuesday urged Brussels to work with Moscow toward scrapping the visa regime between Russia and the European Union

    President Dmitry Medvedev on Tuesday urged Brussels to work with Moscow toward scrapping the visa regime between Russia and the European Union.

    "The European Union consists of 27 states; each of them has its own point of view on removing the visa regime... The quicker we come to a consensus on this issue, the better it will be," Medvedev said at a news conference after a Russia-EU summit in south Russia's Rostov-on-Don.

    Medvedev said Russia was ready to scrap visa requirements for residents of EU states "tomorrow," if necessary, adding that Russian society was ready for the move.

    "I have told our partners that if anything is required from us, then we are ready to work in a bilateral format," the Russian president also said.

    Russia and the EU announced their "long-term" plans on the visa-free regime at the St. Petersburg Economic Forum in 2003. Last November, the sides agreed in Stockholm to start a long-term Partnership for Modernization, which includes a commitment to scrap visa requirements.

    Russia's envoy to the EU, Vladimir Chizhov, said last week that Russia and the EU should speed up the process of abolishing visa requirements.

    "After seven years it is time to move from a long-term goal to something more concrete," he said.

    ROSTOV-ON-DON, June 1 (RIA Novosti)

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