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President Vladimir Putin attended a lunch hosted in his honour by President of India Kocheril Raman Narayanan

October 3, 2000, Presidential Palace, Delhi

The lunch was attended by members of the Indian government, leaders of the country’s main political parties, well-known public figures and prominent members of the Indian scientific, arts and cultural communities.

Speaking at the lunch, Mr Putin called the signature of the Declaration of Strategic Partnership between Russia and India an important milestone in the two countries’ bilateral relations.

The President said that Russia and India have a duty to preserve and strengthen the mutual friendship and warmth that has grown between the two countries.

Mr Putin said that the talks he held with his Indian colleagues in Delhi have confirmed the high level of trust and understanding between the two countries. Russia and India both stand firm in their commitment to the standards and principles of democracy, their desire to strengthen global and regional security and their determination to effectively combat threats such as international terrorism, aggressive separatism and religious extremism.

The President said that only international relations based on an equal partnership can effectively counter the new threats and challenges the world faces today and create a new foundation and framework. Russia is pleased that not only does it share common positions on important issues with India, but that the two countries are working together to find constructive solutions.

October 3, 2000, Presidential Palace, Delhi