Russia Suggests Holding International Conference On Balkan Problems

Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov suggests holding an international conference to discuss Balkan problems. "It is important to make a fair and objective evaluation of the region's problems," Ivanov told journalists in Bucharest. In the minister's opinion, security and stability of the Balkans are mainly threatened by "separatism and the forces that want to re-establish borders and divide zones of influence." At the same time, the "face-lifting measures" applied to the region's "hot spots" are no good because they tone down the problems instead of solving them. According to Ivanov, an international conference on Balkan problems could strengthen the inviolability of the region's borders and of internationally accepted principles that make separatists' actions illegal.