Outcomes Of Putin Blair Talks
On Outcomes of Talks Between Russian President Vladimir Putin and British Prime Minister Tony Blair
Russian President Vladimir Putin called Britain's proposal for a three-phase settlement in Iraq acceptable to Russia.
This is a good basis for discussing the problem and bringing the positions closer, said the President at a press conference following the talks with British Prime Minister Tony Blair.
Moreover, in all the stages it is necessary to clearly designate the role of the United Nations and its Security Council, Putin believes. The President does not rule out that resolving the situation in Iraq may be conducted without UN involvement, just as the war was waged without UN authorization. The Russian leader expressed the doubt, however, that this kind of settlement will be long-term, effective and fair.
Blair suggested a plan for Iraqi settlement, consisting of three stages. At the first phase of settlement in the country there is to be accomplished postwar reconstruction, the security situation should be stabilized and improvements achieved on the humanitarian side. At stage two an interim administration should be established, and at stage three a new constitution should be adopted, and a government with full powers created. The coalition forces in solving these tasks must cooperate with the UN, believes the Prime Minister.
The Russian President suggests that the world community should concentrate and determine what actions should be taken for the purpose of immediately dealing with the humanitarian problems of Iraq and how the international community actually and legally can put the seal of finality to the question of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) in Iraq.
To solve the humanitarian task it is necessary to ensure the implementation of the Oil for Food program. In postwar Iraq it should also be carried out under the control of the United Nations. The solution of the WMD problem is linked to the necessity of inspections in the postwar conditions. The Russian side is ready to take the most active part in ensuring the work of the UN inspectors in Iraq.
Touching upon the topic of Iraq's debts, Putin said that this matter needs thorough elaboration. Russia is ready to discuss it, but in any case - within the framework of the Paris Club.
The next meeting between Putin and Blair will be held in St. Petersburg at the end of May at the celebrations in honor of the 300th anniversary of the city.