Putin: no deadline should be set for Kosovo settlement.

There should be no deadline for the Kosovo settlement process, Russian President Vladimir Putin told a press conference in Sochi on Friday.

The Russian position on Kosovo has not altered, Putin said.

"We favor a direct dialog between Pristina and Belgrade," he was quoted by the Itar-Tass news agency as saying. "We do not think that this dialog should be limited by time. It should be a free dialog to result in a mutually acceptable compromise," he said.

Putin voiced readiness to continue cooperation with all parties to the Kosovo settlement process, as well as the United States and the European Union within the UN framework.

"The principle of territorial integrity defended by Russia in the Kosovo situation concerns many states, and we think that it would be highly irresponsible to disregard this principle," he said.

[Source: Xinhua News Agency, Moscow, 29Sep07]

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