Vladimir Putin Firmly Declares: Kaliningrad Region Will Remain Part Of Russian Federation

Russian president Vladimir Putin firmly declared that the Kaliningrad region will remain part of the Russian Federation. Commenting in live TV broadcast on the question put by a TV viewer from Kaliningrad about the rumours that the Kaliningrad region may be given up for debts, the President declared that this will not be happen. It is impossible to give up the Kaliningrad region, we should not even speak about this, the President stressed. This issue is not on the agenda, I hear this for the first time, he said. At the same time, as the head of state pointed out, there are problems with the Kaliningrad region, and above all they are connected with the forthcoming admission of Poland and Lithuania to the European Union after which the Kaliningrad region will fully become an enclave territory. Putin pointed out that Russia is conducting negotiations with the European Union so that the problem of Russian citizens' movement between Kaliningrad region and the main territory of Russia be solved before the year 2004. With this aim in view the working groups, both on a bilateral basis -- with Poland and Lithuania, and on the multilateral basis -- with the European Union have been formed.

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