Russia 110908 Basic Political Developments

Putin launches gas pipeline launch in Vladivostok (Part 2)

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Putin launches gas pipeline launch in Vladivostok (Part 2)
VLADIVOSTOK. Sept 8 (Interfax) - Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin launched the Sakhalin-Khabarovsk-Vladivostok gas pipeline, one of the key elements of the Eastern Gas program, at a ceremony on September 8, an Interfax correspondent reported from the launch ceremony.

The pipeline will supply gas to Russia's Sakhalin region, Khabarovsk and Primorye territories and also pave the way for supplies to the Asia-Pacific region countries.


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07:01 08/09/2011ALL NEWS

Russia does its best to resume talks on Iran – FM

UNITED NATIONS, September 8 (Itar-Tass) —— Russia is doing everything possible to resume six-party talks with Iran at the earliest opportunity, Russian Permanent Representative to the U.N. Vitaly Churkin said.

Moscow “consistently calls for solving problems through dialogue with Iran… We are convinced that there is no alternative to political and diplomatic methods and the need to look for a compromise that would make it possible to move closer to the set goal of dispelling all doubts about the solely peaceful nature of the Iranian nuclear programme, after which Iran will use in full measure all the rights of a non-nuclear members of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty,” Churkin said.

Iran's Security Council Secretary due in Russia
Service: Foreign Policy
News Code :9006-10391
ISNA - Tehran
Service: Foreign Policy

TEHRAN (ISNA)-The Secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council Saeed Jalili would depart for Russia, while Sergei Shmatko, Russian Energy Minister and Sergei Krinko the head of Russia's Nuclear Energy Agency would come to Iran.

Iran’s embassy in Russia announced, “Sergei Shmatko will visit Iran heading a delegation to take part in Iran-Russia joint economic commission and the ceremony held for pre-launch of Bushehr nuclear power plant.”

Shmatko is expected to leave Moscow on September 11-12 and Sergei Krinko would accompany him in his visit.

Iran-Russia joint economic commission would be held on September 11 in Tehran and Krinko would arrive on September 12.

Different issues will be examined in meetings such as transportation, custom, trade and industry. Environmental and energy cooperation between the two countries will be studied as well.

As to Russian Ambassador to North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Dmitry Rogozin‘s visit to Tehran, Iran’s Embassy in Russia added “The visit would take place to discuss NATO further programs and its defense missile shield.”

It continued,” the exact time of the visit is not announced yet.”

Also Iran’s embassy in Russia said, ”Jalili is expected to take part in the meeting in which the secretaries of 40 counties' security councils will also participate." The meeting would be held in Yekaterinburg, Russia on September 21-22.

End Item

Russia, Libya to hold talks at UN assembly

September 7, 2011  

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Russia will hold talks with the Libyan rebels who ousted its old ally Moammar Qaddafi at the United Nations assembly later this month, Kremlin's envoy said on Wednesday, as Moscow hopes to retain a foothold in the energy-rich country.

"Our next contact with the Libyans, with the new leadership, has been scheduled to take place during the General Assembly," Kremlin's Africa envoy Mikhail Margelov told AFP, referring to the UN assembly meeting opening in New York in mid-September.

Russia last week recognized the rebels as the legitimate rulers of Libya and expressed hope that the new authorities would honor the contracts signed with the Qaddafi regime.

Analysts say however that Moscow's efforts to distance itself from the conflict and its tardy recognition of the National Transitional Council mean the most lucrative business contracts would be given to the West which supported the Libyan opposition in its war against Qaddafi.

Speaking at a political conference in the central Russian city of Yaroslavl, Margelov glossed over the fears, instead saying Moscow was in active talks with the new authorities.

"The opposition in Libya is extremely multi-faceted. We are in dialogue with its various segments," he said.

Members of Libya's transitional government have been invited to Moscow for energy talks, Russian officials said.

Margelov, who in recent weeks made several trips to Libya for talks with Qaddafi loyalists and the rebels, said he had no plans to travel to the Libyan capital Tripoli in the near future.

"I have not been given this task so far," he said.

Instead, on Tuesday he would go on a tour of Arab and African countries that will include visits to Morocco and Lebanon, Margelov told AFP, but declined to provide further details.

-AFP/NOW Lebanon

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Moscow Awaits Libyan Transitional Oil Official

08 September 2011


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The Moscow Times

Libya's oil minister will be the first member of the North African country's National Transitional Council to visit Russia, President Dmitry Medvedev's envoy to Africa and the Middle East said.

The oil minister "will probably be first to come," Mikhail Margelov said Wednesday in an interview in Yaroslavl. "The timing of the visit will be decided through diplomatic channels. It's a matter of a few weeks." The new administration's oil and finance minister is Ali Tarhouni.

Margelov said he plans to meet a Libyan delegation at the United Nations General Assembly in New York, adding that Russia must not delay appointing a new ambassador to Tripoli.

While Russia joined calls to end Moammar Gadhafi's 42-year rule and recognized the new administration last week, it repeatedly criticized NATO for overstepping a mandate to protect civilians in Libya. Russia hopes the new Libyan leaders will honor previously signed contracts and agreements, the Foreign Ministry said Sept. 1.

Russia stands to lose billions of dollars in deals it signed with Gadhafi's regime, Aram Shegunts, head of the Arab-Russian Chamber of Industry in Moscow, said last month.

Libya, home to Africa's largest oil reserves, produced more than 1.5 million barrels a day before the start of the civil war in February. Gazprom has two exploration blocks itself and is a partner in producing fields with BASF's Wintershall unit. It also agreed to enter the Elephant project with Italy's Eni. Tatneft also has Libyan exploration sites.

Eni’s Greenstream gas pipeline from Libya to Italy may reopen next year and production will return to prewar levels in 2014, according to the Paris-based Societe Generale bank.

“We expect the Greenstream pipe to stay closed until early 2012 as the Italian market is already long in gas and is witnessing a decline in demand,” it said. “We expect a gradual ramp-up in 2012 to 2013 with production returning to its prewar level in 2014 on a full-year basis.”

"The main thing is that we are ready and the Libyans are ready to cooperate in the field of energy," Margelov said, adding that other areas where the two nations may work together include military equipment and telecommunications.

"The number of topics for cooperation is more than just oil," he said.

Russia has called on the United Nations to coordinate Libya's transition to democracy after the ouster of Gadhafi, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told reporters Wednesday in Moscow at a joint briefing with his French counterpart, Alain Juppe, Bloomberg reported.

The UN will play an "essential role" in Libya's reconstruction, Juppe said.

Russia also urged talks in Syria between President Bashar Assad and the opposition and warned about a repeat of the Libyan "scenario" in the Middle Eastern country, Lavrov said.

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The Moscow Times

SEPTEMBER 7, 2011, 10:33 P.M. ET

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