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    ULAN BATOR, March 3, 2004 - RIA Novosti. On Wednesday Russia and Mongolia signed an inter-governmental agreement on military-technical aid on a gratis basis. The document was signed by head of the directorate of the Committee of the Russian Federation for military-technical cooperation with foreign states Vyacheslav Dzirkaln and Mongolia's Minister of Defense Jugderdemidiyn Gurragchaa.

    In accordance with the request of the President of Mongolia the emphasis is supposed to be made on equipping special units of the Mongolian forces for the anti-terrorist struggle, Dzirkaln said.

    He noted that the sum disbursed for these purposes by the Russian side will be determined depending on Mongolia's requirements.

    "The sum is sufficient to resolve the tasks of the first stage -the creation of anti-terrorist units of Mongolia. When such units are created they are supposed to be fitted out with special equipment," Dzirkaln said.

    In his words, "Mongolia shows interest for any Russian military hardware as its own military equipment has long become worn out and needs repairing." Dzirkaln also reported that the agreement signed for three years will serve as a basis for expanding cooperation. Moreover, it is a framework agreement which will make it possible to fill it with specific provisions in future in accordance with requests of the Mongolian side.

    "This is the fist stage of cooperation. In future Mongolia is interested in the resumption of the training of specialists on the basis of the Defense Ministry of Russia and in modernization of Soviet-made military equipment," Dzirkaln concluded.

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