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ST. PETERSBURG, June 4 (Itar-Tass) — Visa-free travels is a common aim of Russia and the European Union, President of the European Commission Jose Manuel Barroso said at the Russia-EU summit in Strelnya outside St. Petersburg on Monday.
He said much progress has been reached at talks on liberalization of the visa regime. Barroso also stressed that this would be impossible without political will and coordination. With that in view, he believes it is necessary to give instructions to senior officials to meet more often to continue working on the visa-free travel issue. He also offered to focus on that at the Monday summit.
In his opening remarks at the summit, Russian President Vladimir Putin also put emphasis on the visa issue. He expressed his displeasure over slow progress at talks on simplifying visa procedures between Russia and the EU. Putin stressed that true partnership between Russia and the European Union “is impossible with barriers impeding contacts between people”.