Russia 101118 Basic Political Developments

Peres to Putin deputy: Hope we will progress to direct talks within days

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Peres to Putin deputy: Hope we will progress to direct talks within days,7340,L-3986463,00.html
Published: 11.18.10, 10:53 / Israel News

President Shimon Peres told the First Deputy Prime Minister of Russia Viktor Zubkov "I hope that within days we will be able to progress to direct talks with the Palestinians".

Zubkov said that the political dialogue between Israeli and Russian leaders was "intensive" and noted that he and Foreign minister Lieberman were trying to establish infrastructure for commerce and joint relations. (Ronen Medzini)

PM Netanyahu meets Russian First Deputy PM Zubkov and economic delegation

17 Nov 2010

They discussed bilateral cooperation in the spheres of agriculture, economics, space research and natural gas exploration.

(Communicated by the Prime Minister's Media Adviser)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu this evening (Wednesday), 17 November 2010, met with Russian First Deputy Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov. The two men agreed on wide-ranging bilateral cooperation in the spheres of agriculture, economics, space research and natural gas exploration.
Regarding agriculture, Prime Minister Netanyahu said that the combination of Israeli technology and know-how and water resources in Russia could lead to fruitful bilateral cooperation. Regarding natural gas, the Prime Minister called on Russian companies to join gas exploration efforts in Israel and said that he had no doubt that Israel could learn much from Russian companies' considerable experience and know-how in the field.
The two men also discussed the Iranian issue and space research.
At the close of the meeting, Prime Minister Netanyahu briefed his guests on the progress in establishing a national memorial in Israel to commemorate Red Army soldiers who fell during World War II and the hundreds of thousands of Jews who fought in its ranks. Russian First Deputy Prime Minister Zubkov expressed great appreciation for the establishment of the memorial and recognized the role of the Red Army veterans now living in Israel in the historic victory over Nazi Germany.

Russian, Iranian Presidents To Meet
November 18, 2010

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and his Iranian counterpart Mahmud Ahmadinejad are scheduled to hold talks amid a rift between their governments, who have traditionally had warm ties.

The presidents were due to meet November 18 on the sidelines of a summit in the Azerbaijani capital, Baku, of leaders from littoral Caspian states.

Iran appealed for a return to stronger ties with Moscow on November 17, with Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast saying on Russia Today television that Tehran believes foreign powers have been trying to hamper the long-term cooperation between Iran and Russia.

Russian-Iranian relations worsened in September when Moscow officially dropped plans to supply Tehran with high-precision S-300 missiles.

Ties have also been strained over Iran's controversial nuclear program, with Russia backing a series of United Nations Security Council sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

Ahmadinejad has accused Russia of falling under the influence of the United States.

compiled from agency reports
Medvedev to attend Caspian states summit in Baku

18.11.2010, 03.39

MOSCOW, November 18 (Itar-Tass) - Russian President Dmitry Medvedev leaves for Baku, Azerbaijan, on Thursday, to attend the 3rd summit of Caspian Sea states: Russia, Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan.

Medvedev will hold a number of bilateral meetings with his colleagues, presidential aide Sergei Prikhodko said.

"He is beginning his stay in Baku with a meeting with Azerbaijan's President Aliyev. He also plans to meet with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev.

"The summit tentatively begins at 16:00 (15:00, Moscow time). It will last about three hours, to be followed by the signing of final documents and a joint statement by the leaders for the press. The heads of state will meet at working dinner," Prikhodko said

Medvedev will be accompanied by Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, presidential aide Sergei Prikhodko, Minister of Natural Resources Yuri Trutnev, Energy Minister Sergei Shmatko, head of the Fisheries Agency Andrei Krainy and head of the FSB's Border Service Vladimir Pronichev.

Caspian Sea countries have sufficient potential to guarantee security: Kremlin aide

09:26, November 18, 2010

Caspian Sea countries have sufficient potential to guarantee their own security without inviting third parties, Kremlin aide Sergei Prikhodko said on Wednesday, one day before a one-day summit is to be held in Azerbaijan.

"We don't think any naval force in the Caspian poses any potential military threat to us, but we believe that Caspian Sea states have sufficient potential to guarantee a reliable security system themselves without attracting third countries," Prikhodko was quoted by Interfax news agency as saying.

He said that the summit would adopt a joint statement about the results of the summit, guidelines of future work and a security cooperation agreement.

However, Prikhodko said that the security agreement will not be a legal document but a guideline for the joint efforts of agencies, law enforcement bodies, everyone dealing with these issues.

"This summit does not have an objective of finishing work over the convention but it will become a step on this road," Prikhodko added.

Russia supports the approval of universal legal norms that would cover the delimitation of the entire Caspian Sea and define the principles of military operations, naval seafaring in the Caspian, conditions of stretching Trans-Caspian pipelines along the seabed, and the transit including routes along Russian domestic waterways, according to Prikhodko.

Russia believes a strict balance is needed between the efforts to extract oil and gas and to preserve nature and biodiversity, he said.

The one-day summit scheduled for Nov. 18 draws Russia, Iran, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and host Azerbaijan.

The summit's agenda includes talks on the legal status of the Caspian Sea, the cooperation and interaction of littoral states in the economy, transport, communication, the definition of place and agenda of the next summit.

Source: Xinhua

Medvedev, Aliyev to discuss Karabakh, energy coop'n

18.11.2010, 08.08

MOSCOW, November 18 (Itar-Tass) - The Nagorno-Karabakh peace process will be, most likely, the main subject of discussion at a meeting between Presidents Dmitry Medvedev of the Russian Federation (RF) and Ilkham Aliyev of Azerbaijan. The meeting is to be held on the sidelines of the 3rd summit of the Caspian countries here on Thursday.

A Russian delegation expert has told Itar-Tass, "I think that problems concerning efforts towards a settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh issue will be, of course, the main subject of discussion".

Meanwhile, Medvedev met with his Armenian counterpart Serge Sargsyan in the Kremlin on Wednesday. Sargsyan told the RF president that "Armenia strives for peace and stability in the Caucasus. This is precisely the basis of its efforts in the search for a peaceful and lasting solution to the Nagorno-Karabakh problem".

The Russian delegation experts said, "Fuel and energy supply, including that in the Caspian Sea in reference to the summit, will be the second subject of discussion during the upcoming meeting between Medvedev and Aliyev"

"One can suppose that matters relating to routes for the transportation of energy resources from Caspian deposits may be also touched upon," he said. "It is not ruled out that the Nabucco theme (construction of the pipeline) may be raised as well," the expert added.

First time in Russian history presidential envoy in federal district has led intergovernmental commission

Baku, Fineko/ By a relevant decree Russian prime minister Vladimir Putin replaced the chairman and secretary of the Russian part of the Azerbaijani-Russian Intergovernmental Commission for Economic Cooperation.

A source in the government of Azerbaijan informs that Russian PM Decree #1977p from 12 November 2010 appointed Alexander Khloponin, deputy prime minister and plenipotentiary representative of the Russian President in the North Caucasus federal district, the chairman of the Commission’s Russian part. He was succeeded by energy minister Sergey Shmatko.

"The secretary of the Russian part of the Commission was replaced in parallel. The Azerbaijani side was informed in advance about the impending decision. Currently we expect from Russia, as the host country, the notification of the date of Commission’s next meeting and its agenda," the source said.

Previously, Commission’s meeting was scheduled for November 2010.

The Russian government’s new decision creates a technical conflict: never before the Commission has been headed by an authorized representative of the President in the federal district. Besides, the co-chairman and the secretary of the Commission are geographically remote: Khloponin bases himself in Pyatigorsk and the Commission’s secretary in Moscow.

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