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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Yeltsin Bounds Into Bishkek for Summit




BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan -- A re-energized President Boris Yeltsin arrived in Kyrgyzstan on Tuesday for a summit with the leaders of four Asian nations, hoping to further strengthen Russia's ties to China.


The one-day summit in the Kyrgyz capital of Bishkek is aimed at increasing stability along China's 7,000-kilometer border with Russia and three Central Asian nations.


The Chinese-Soviet border was a scene of tension after the two nations had a falling out in the late 1950s.


But after the Soviet collapse, relations between Russia and China have improved considerably. At his frequent meetings with Chinese leaders, Yeltsin has repeatedly called for a "multipolar world'' to counterbalance U.S. clout in global affairs.


Yeltsin and Chinese President Jiang Zemin will hold one-on-one talks Wednesday in addition to participating in the summit.


Yeltsin has looked unusually strong and energetic in recent days, speaking strongly and clearly at televised meetings with officials. In the past, the president's speech was often slurred.


"I'm feeling fine. I have had some troubles with my heart, you remember my surgery. It's all over now. Now I'm in a fighting mood,'' Yeltsin told reporters in Bishkek on Tuesday.


And he added jokingly: "I'm really ready for combat, especially with the Westerners.''