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France, Germany call on Russia to ratify Kyoto Protocol
www.chinaview.cn 2004-02-03 03:49:13

    PARIS, Feb. 3 (Xinhuanet) -- French and German environment ministers on Tuesday called on Russia to ratify the Kyoto Protocol so that the United Nations agreement on fighting global warming could enter into force.

    "Our joint action comes within the framework of the Kyoto Protocol and we renew our appeal to Russia to ratify the protocol," Germany's Juergen Trittin and France's Roselyne Bachelot said ina joint statement during their meeting in the French Atlantic seaside resort of La Baule.

    "We confirm that we are engaged to the implementation of the Kyoto Protocol and we call on all nations to do the same," said the statement.

    "An action of conviction is needed from Moscow," said the French environment minister at a press conference in La Baule.

    For his part, Trittin reaffirmed that Kyoto offers Russia an array of financial benefits.

    The Kyoto Protocol, born in the Japanese city of that name six years ago, requires industrialized signatory countries to cut emissions of greenhouse gases, the carbon-based pollution that is a by-product of burning fossil fuels and which is blamed for driving climate change.

    Agreed as a "framework" agreement in 1997, it sets down the goals that industrialized countries, excluding poorer countries, would reduce their emissions of heat-trapping fossil gases by 2008-2012 as compared with their 1990 levels.

    The protocol suffered a crippling blow in March 2001 when the United States walked away, stripping the Protocol of the world's biggest polluter and carbon-market player.

    As a result, the ratification by the Duma, the Russian parliament, is essential for pushing the number of industrialized signatories over a key threshold that will turn the draft deal into an international treaty.

    In December Moscow signaled it wanted more concessions on the rules on foreign investments and clean technology.

    In Moscow on Tuesday, Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Losyukov said Russia "would determine its attitude toward the Kyoto protocol based on national interests." Enditem 

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