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Putin Supports Belgrade's Kosova Plan

3 June 2004 -- Russian President Vladimir Putin today partly backed Serbia's efforts to stabilize the UN-administered Serbian province of Kosova.

Putin made his remarks at a meeting with Serbian Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica at the Russian president's residence near the Black Sea resort city of Sochi.

Putin said Moscow backs Belgrade's plan for Kosova, but that it still needs to be finalized with the international community and the citizens of the province.

Putin also said he thinks the West should pay for the reconstruction of Belgrade after bombing it with NATO warplanes in 1999.

Earlier, Putin called for increased economic cooperation between Russia and Serbia-Montenegro. Kostunica and Putin are discussing ways to deepen cooperation between their nations.