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Russia seeks closer ties with Latin America, Putin says

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Russian President Vladimir Putin has expressed his desire to strengthen relations with Latin American countries, saying that they will play a key role in the new multipolar world order.

Speaking at the opening of the first International Parliamentary Conference ‘Russia – Latin America’ in Moscow on Friday, Putin said that Moscow wants Latin America to be “strong, independent and successful,” and wishes to maintain and develop ties with every country in the region.

Putin praised the history of Latin America, saying that its people have always strived for independence and sovereignty. He also said that Russia shares a similar view on international affairs with many countries in the region, and supports a system of international relations based on equality, justice, respect for international law and each other’s legitimate interests.

“In this new, polycentric architecture, the states of Latin America, with their enormous economic potential and human resources, and their desire to pursue a sovereign, independent foreign policy, will play one of the leading roles in the world. There is no doubt about it,” Putin said.

The conference, organized by Russia’s lower chamber of parliament, the State Duma, brings together more than 200 participants, including lawmakers from Latin American and Caribbean countries. It will run until Monday and will feature multiple panel and roundtable discussions on a range of international issues, including the emergence of multiple worlds and maintaining international security for all.

Russia has been expanding its presence and influence in Latin America in recent years, offering economic cooperation, military assistance and political support to some of its allies, such as Venezuela, Cuba and Nicaragua. Russia has also been critical of US interference and sanctions in the region, accusing Washington of trying to undermine the legitimate governments and destabilize the situation.

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