Igor Ivanov will meet his Portuguese counterpart, Dr. Jaime Gama for talks on bilateral relations and issues connected to the OSCE (Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe), which of which Portugal currently has the Presidency. Mr. Ivanov is also expected to have a meeting with the Portuguese President, Dr. Jorge Sampaio.
The issues to be discussed will be economic and trade relations between Moscow and Lisbon and the role the OSCE will play in combating international terrorism. This comes weeks after Moscow criticised this organisation for leaving Estonia and Latvia, where it was monitoring the situation of the Russian minorities in these Baltic States.
Dr. Jaime Gama declared that during its Presidency of the OSCE, Portugal intends to find someone responsible for the co-ordination of policing activities in theatres of crisis management. Portugal will also nominate its representative to head the anti-terrorism department in the OSCE. The OSCE Summit in Lisbon next June will concentrate on International Terrorism and ways to combat it and it is expected that this Summit will present a European Charter against Terrorism.
This theme has seen the Russian Federation and the western nations working closely together in a spirit of friendship and collaboration which had not existed since the war. Russia understands international terrorism only too well due to its own problems in Chechnya, an issue which it appears the western nations finally understand fully.
Timothy BANCROFT-HINCHEY PRAVDA.Ru