Russian president kicks off two-day Polish trip

08:39, December 07, 2010      

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Russian President Dmitry Medvedev arrived on Monday, becoming the first Russian head of state to officially visit Poland in eight years.

Medvedev met with his Polish counterpart Bronislaw Komorovsky, and they witnessed the signing of several agreements on economic, political and cultural cooperation.

"We have reached a situation where a change is possible in relations between Russia and Poland," Medvedev told the Polish weekly Wprost.

Poland's stance is similar. "Chances are we'll open a new chapter," Komorovsky said ahead of the visit.

Reports said the talks between the two leaders focused on security issues and the Katyn massacre in 1940, when over 20,000 Polish officers were killed by Soviet secret police.

The visit came after a recent declaration approved by Russian parliament over recognition of the Katyn massacre in World War II.

After the declaration, Komorovsky highly praised the recognition and extended an invitation to Medvedev, hoping the visit will contribute to a rapprochement of bilateral ties.

Russia and Poland have been in dispute over the Soviet execution of Polish officers around the Katyn forest in western Russia for a long time.

On Nov. 26, Russia's State Duma adopted a draft statement, admitting that the killing of Polish officers near Katyn was directly ordered by then Soviet leader Joseph Stalin.

Source: Xinhua


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