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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

French Visit First Test for Primakov

PARIS -- French Foreign Minister Herve de Charette will visit Moscow next week to meet with newly appointed Foreign Minister Alexander Primakov, a spokesman said Tuesday.

The meeting with Primakov, during de Charette's Monday and Tuesday visit, will be the first by a Western foreign minister since Primakov was appointed last week, said French Foreign Ministry spokesman Jacques Rummelhardt.

De Charette is to discuss "bilateral relations and all international issues" with Primakov and "the highest authorities" in Russia, Rummelhardt told a daily news briefing. He declined to elaborate.

Primakov, the former head of Russia's Foreign Intelligence Service, replaced the more pro-Western Andrei Kozyrev, raising concern President Boris Yeltsin was bending to pressure from nationalists who made strong gains in recent parliamentary elections.

Rummelhardt steered clear of commenting on the Russian attack on Chechen rebels holding hostages and testing Yeltsin as he faces growing nationalist sentiment in Russia.