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Russia: Talbott To Prepare For Albright's Moscow Visit

Washington, 29 April 1997 (RFE/RL) - The State Department says Deputy U.S. Secretary of State Strobe Talbott will arrive in Moscow by Wednesday to prepare for Secretary of State Madeleine Albright's visit to Russia this week for talks on the NATO expansion issue.

Spokesman Nicholas Burns told reporters yesterday Albright will meet Foreign Minister Yevgeny Primakov on Thursday. She is hoping to accelerate talks between Russia and the NATO alliance on a charter that will spell out the relations between Russia and NATO as the alliance begins accepting new members.

Burns says NATO hopes to see the negotiations completed this spring. Russia is opposed to enlargement of the 16-member organization. However NATO says it will proceed with invitations to new members this summer. The first bids are expected to go to the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland.