Russian Foreign Minister to arrive tonight on a day-long visit

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New Delhi, Oct 19 (UNI) Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will arrive here tonight on a day-long visit for discussions with External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee on bilateral relations and regional and international issues of mutual interest.

During the day-long visit, a Protocol on holding regular consultations between the Ministry of External Affairs and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation during 2009-2010 is expected to be signed, the External Affairs Ministry announced here.

Before having talks with the External Affairs Minister, the Rusian Foreign Minister will call on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

Sources said Mr Lavrov will hold discussions with Indian leaders on finalising the civil nuclear cooperation agreenment that could be signed during the visit of Russian President to India later this year.

Russian President Dmitry Medevev will arrive in India for the annual Summit with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on December 5.

India has already signed the agreement with the US and France.

This will be the second meeting between the two Foreign Ministers since September end.

Mr Mukherjee and Mr Lavrov last met in New York on September 28 on the sidelines of the 63rd UN General Assembly meeting.

The External Affairs Minister had last visited Russia in May while the Russian Foreign Minister paid his last visit to India in February 2007.

UNI RB AKJ KP1612

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