SOCHI, October 24. /TASS/. Russia’s relations with African nations have entered a new stage that is to be based on the respect for the right of nations to decide their own future, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday closing the Russia-Africa summit.
"Many spoke today about a new stage, new quality of relations between Russia and Africa. I cannot but agree with that," Putin said. "This new stage, new quality must be based on common values. We share support for such values as justice, equality, respect to the right of nations to decide their own future. We will stick to these position when we continue to coordinate our efforts within international formats. We will pool efforts in the interests of stability on the African continent."
According to the Russian leader, Russia knows about Africa’s problems. "Discussions have demonstrated than we have either common or similar views on the majority of pressing global and regional problems. Our countries are interested in the progressive development of Russian-African relations in all spheres," he stressed.
He recalled that many African leaders had hailed the former Soviet Union’s and Russia’s role in establishing independent African states. "I would like to express my sincere gratitude for this historical memory," he said.
"I am convinced that all of us want to make our cooperation more systemic and comprehensive," he said, adding that many useful ideas and initiatives had been voiced during the summit on how to invigorate cooperation in the spheres of politics, security, trade and investments, industrial cooperation, science and high technologies, education and healthcare.
"I hope that relations between Russia and African nations will raise to a new level, which is in the interests of each participant in today’s summit," the Russian leader said.
Russia’s Black Sea resort city of Sochi hosted the first Russia-Africa summit on October 23-24. The forum was co-chaired by Presidents Vladimir Putin of Russia and Abdel Fattah al-Sisi of Egypt. The leaders of all the 54 African nations were invited to take part, with more than forty confirming their participation. Eight major African integration associations and organizations were also involved in the event. An economic forum was held on the summit’s sideline. It was attended by the continent’s heads of state, representatives of the business community and government agencies. TASS was the official photo host agency of the summit and the economic forum.