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Petersburg CITY / Guide to St. Petersburg, Russia
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City news, 30.05.2003 12:25

Vladimir Putin to welcome foreign guests today

the Bronze Horseman The official reception of foreign guests and their wives will take place today, on May 30 by the Bronze Horseman. 41 presidents and prime ministers will gather in Saint Petersburg on May 30-31.

The leaders from the following countries will all be visiting the city: the UK, Germany, Italy, Canada, the US, France, Finland, Cyprus, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Estonia, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kirgizia, Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Ukraine, Slovakia, China, Austria, the Czech Republic, Japan, Belgium, Greece, Denmark, Ireland, Spain, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Hungary, Sweden, Malta, Slovenia and India. General Secretary of the UN Kofi Annan, General Director of UNESCO Koichiro Matsuura and Chairman of the EC Romano Prodi are also expected to arrive.

Deputy Press Secretary to the Russian President Dmitry Peskov told journalists that after the reception ceremony all the heads of state and their wives will walk to St Isaac's Cathedral where they will be met by Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia Alexei II and be shown around the cathedral. Then the foreign leaders will go to a gala concert at the Mariinsky Theatre. Mr Peskov said that the BBC had all the rights to broadcast the concert. Afterwards Mr and Mrs Putin will host a celebratory dinner onboard the ship Silver Whisper on the occasion of the city's 300th anniversary. Mr Peskov added that there will be many meetings and negotiations with foreign leaders over the next few days, although a definite timetable has not yet been set.

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(c) 2000