Moscow prepares for UK `reset'

Russia sees no obstacles to normalising relations with the UK, foreign minister Sergei Lavrov said recently. The statement comes in anticipation of his British counterpart's upcoming visit.

British foreign secretary David Miliband will visit Moscow in early November as part of a working visit at Lavrov's invitation. "The sides will discuss the entire range of Russian-British relations and the international agenda," said a Russian foreign ministry spokesman.

In a recent interview, Lavrov stressed his side's willingness to improve relations had been present all along. "Moscow did not suspend facilitation of the visa regime with London or cooperation between secret services. We are prepared for a reset," he said.

"The same as it happened with the United States, Russia does not have to take any efforts. We are always prepared for an equal dialogue and cooperation," Lavrov emphasised.

During the visit, the sides plan to discuss a simplified visa regime between Russia and the UK. According to Nesterenko, the complicated process of obtaining a visa had been a thorny issue and had not been discussed earlier because of the unwillingness of the British side.

Commenting the "reset" with the US, Larvrov stated: "We have agreed to actively work and do everything to reach a new agreement to limit strategic arms by the time the current treaty expires."

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