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Lavrov, Fabius to discuss preps for Geneva-2 and bilateral relations

January 13, 2014, 9:51 UTC+3 PARIS

The upcoming talks are to focus on matters of current importance that are on the international agenda, including the crisis in Syria

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Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov (R) with French Foreign Affairs Minister Laurent Fabius (L)

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov (R) with French Foreign Affairs Minister Laurent Fabius (L)

© EPA/MAXIM SHIPENKOV

PARIS, January 13. /ITAR-TASS/. Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who is currently here for the preparation of an international conference on Syria, is to hold a separate meeting with his French counterpart Laurent Fabius on Monday. The two Foreign ministers will discuss the situation concerning the convocation of a Geneva-2 conference in the Swiss city of Montreux on January 22, chemical disarmament of that Arab republic, and situation around Mali and the Central African Republic (C.A.R.).

"The upcoming talks are to focus on matters of current importance that are on the international agenda, including the crisis in Syria, with due regard for the preparation of a Geneva-2 international conference and the elimination of Syrian stocks of chemical agents," a Russian Foreign Ministry official said.

Moscow-based analysts pointed out, "Despite the known difference in Russia's and France's approaches to the Syria issue, a high quality of Russo-French dialogue makes it possible, in an atmosphere of openness and trust, to look for points of contact and ways for interaction in the process of settling this and other regional conflicts, those in Mali and the C.A.R., in particular."

The Ministry official recalled that Russia had supported France's efforts towards stabilizing the situation in those countries. "The problems of fighting new challenges and threats, primarily international terrorism are also of current concern to both countries," the Ministry official said. "Our two countries which closely encountered this evil in 2013, will step up bilateral cooperation and coordinate their actions within the framework of international institutions and formats".

Lavrov and Fabius will also discuss a timetable of the forthcoming political contacts, trade-and-economic relations, as well as a dialogue in the fields of culture, science, and education, and as a whole the buildup of humanitarian exchanges.

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