Pranab to review bilateral developments in 13th IRIGC session

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Moscow, Oct 11 (UNI) Visiting External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee today said the Indo-Russian strategic partnership covers the entire spectrum of bilateral relationship between the two countries.

''India's strategic partnership with Russia covers the entire spectrum of our bilateral cooperation,'' Mr Mukherjee said in a statement at his arrival in Moscow, to co-chair the 13th session of the Indo-Russian Inter-Governmental Commission (IRIGC) on Trade, Economic, Scientific, Technological and Cultural Cooperation.

''I am pleased to be back in the beautiful city of Moscow after my last visit in November 2005,'' he said.

''Russia enjoys a very special and unique place in India's foreign relations in the context of our long-standing, time-tested friendship and the strategic partnership between the two countries,'' he said, adding that the year 2007 marked the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations, which took place on April 13, a few months before India's Independence.

''It is worth recalling the warm and active contacts of leading Indians -- Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru and Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore -- with Russia which started even before our independence,'' he said.

''Over the last 60 years, the bilateral relationship has steadily developed and our natural complementarities will ensure that India-Russia friendship grows and further deepens in the future,'' the External Affairs Minister noted.

''The two governments have made steady progress in various fields since the landmark visit of His Excellency President Putin to India in January 2007, when he was also the Chief Guest in our Republic Day celebrations,'' he said.

''I am looking forward to reviewing bilateral developments and matters of mutual interest during the meeting of the Inter-Governmental Commission on Trade, Economic, Scientific, Technological and Cultural Cooperation with Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Zhukov and interaction with Russian leaders,'' Mr Mukherjee added.


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