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29 January, 1997
Two envoys of Russian Foreign Minister Yevgeny Primakov will visit Ankara, Athens and Nicosia in order to highlight Moscow's will to play an active role in finding a solution to problems in the southeastern Mediterranean, particularly with regards to the Cyprus problem.
The director of the third directorate for European Affairs at the Russian foreign ministry, Vladimir Tchizov, and deputy director of the ministry's international organizations department, Aleksandr Orlov, arrived in Athens yesterday and are scheduled to meet with Foreign Minister Theodoros Pangalos this morning.
The two Russian officials are scheduled to fly to Nicosia after Athens, where they are scheduled to meet with President Glafcos Clerides, Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash and the United Nations Secretary General's special envoy on the Cyprus issue H an Sung Joo, who is also visiting the island at present.
According to diplomatic sources, Russia aims to promote an active involvement of the five permanent members of the UN's Security Council, in cooperation with the European Union's representative, in finding a solution to the Cyprus issue, saying that the experience of Bosnia has shown the need for collective action in order for problems to be faced effectively.
The same sources said Moscow is also aiming for a plan for the solution of the Cyprus issue to be worked out by the Security Council's five permanent members, in cooperation with the European Union's representative.
Moscow is also proposing the establishment of a permanent "contact group" for the issue, to be comprised of representatives of the Security Council, who will reinforce efforts by the UN Secretary General.
Apart from the Cyprus issue, Athens is expecting to hear the Russian officials' proposals regarding possibilities for expanding Greek-Russian cooperation in the Balkans.
Source: Athens News Agency