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Belarus MFA Press-secretary Comments on OSCE Parliamentary Assembly Ad Hoc Group Visit to Belarus (press release by MFA press service)

Question of Interfax agency:

What comments can Belarusian Foreign Ministry give on the threshold of the visit of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly ad hoc group to Belarus?

Answer of Belarus MFA press-secretary Pavel Latushka:

The OSCE Parliamentary Assembly ad hoc group that arrived in Minsk on May 20-23, 2002 was founded in framework of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly and is headed by Bundestag MP Uta Zapf. Uta Zapf has been to Belarus several times, also on the delegation of the OSCE PA ad hoc group.

The Foreign Ministry believes that the OSCE PA ad hoc group should foster direct co-operation with the Belarusian Parliament - conduct meetings, tackle the issues of the Parliament's membership in the Assembly and pressing issues of the organisation's operation.

In the course of the visit to Minsk the OSCE PA ad hoc group plans to meet with the leadership of the National Assembly, Belarusian Foreign Minister Mikhail Khvostov, Minister of information Mikhail Podgainy and representatives of the President's Administration.

The Belarusian Foreign Ministry expects that this visit will assist to restoration of the Belarusian Parliament's status in the OSCE PA already at its upcoming session in Berlin.