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EU Says No Breakthrough In Talks With Poland On Russia

Finland's Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen (file photo) (AFP) November 18, 2006 -- Finland, which currently holds the EU's rotating presidency, says there has been no breakthrough in talks aimed at persuading Poland to lift its veto of EU negotiations with Russia.

Finnish Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen made the announcement after talks in Warsaw on November 17 with Polish Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski.

The Polish government has been demanding that Russia lift a ban on imports of some food products from Poland in exchange for Poland backing the start of negotiations on a new partnership accord between the EU and Russia.

The Finnish prime minister said he was hopeful an agreement with Poland can still be reached before the planned November 24 start of negotiations with Russia at a summit in Helsinki.

Polish government spokesman Jan Dziedziczak said Poland was seeking some changes to a proposal put forward by Finland to resolve the deadlock. He said Poland would present its position soon.