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    THANKS TO RUSSIA, SPLIT OF INTERNATIONAL ANTITERRORIST COALITION HAS BEEN AVOIDED - RUSSIA DEPUTY FOREIGN MINISTER

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    MOSCOW, JANUARY 16. /RIA NOVOSTI / -- The struggle against terrorism should not be used for meeting political ends, such as a forcible "reforming" of independent states, Russian deputy foreign minister Anatoli Safonov said in a RIA Novosti interview.

    As the Iraq developments show, such steps "lead to the worsening of the global threat of terrorism, instigate the processes of internal transformation of terrorism, mobilisation of its additional manpower and technological resources", he said.

    "The Iraqi crisis has become the most taxing strength test of the readiness of the international community for real confrontation with the global threat of terrorism", Safonov believes.

    "Thanks to the consistent and flexible position of Russia, the crucial goal has been met - prevention of the split of the international antiterrorist coalition", believes the Russian deputy foreign minister.

    Conditions have been preserved for returning the coalition to the fundamental principles of international relations, he noted.

    "The developments in Iraq have unambiguously demonstrated that an erroneous, forcible revision of these principles leads to the erosion of the single strategic landmarks of the international community in the face of the new threats", Anatoli Safonov emphasised.

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