Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov said Moscow's position on Iraq was not aimed against Washington's interests. "We have abandoned the Cold War formula 'the worse for the U.S., the better for us'," the chief Russian diplomat stressed in an article published by The Washington Post.
In Igor Ivanov's words, "the value of true partner and allied relations is not in automatically agreeing with each other, but in jointly looking for ways of solving the problems to mutual benefit." Russia believes that the war against Iraq will entail most grave consequences, including for the US itself, and that's why it openly tells its partners in Washington about it, the Russian minister said. In his words, "isn't it a true partnership" when Moscow suggests a political way to eliminate the threat of mass destruction weapons in Iraq together with the US and other states?
Russia hopes Washington will continue to be guided by the highest interests of Russian-American partnership, "in whatever way the situation around Iraq might further develop." The current level of Russian-US relations "presupposes honest and sincere dialogue, including on the most complicated problems," the Russian foreign minister emphasized.
An explosion of household gas occurred in a nine-storeyed apartment building in the city of Shakhty, the Rostov region of Russia. The blast destroyed two storeys of the building