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    RUSSIA, SPAIN AGREE TO INTENSIFY MILITARY CO-OPERATION

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    MOSCOW, January 28, 2004 (RIA Novosti) -- Russia and Spain have agreed to set up a joint military affairs commission.

    Summing up our negotiations, we can say that we discussed our tasks and agreed to set up a joint commission to work in five directions, said Spanish Defence Minister Federico Trillo after his negotiations with Russian Defence Minister Sergei Ivanov.

    According to the Spanish minister, these directions include a common strategy and cooperation between the armed services. In this respect, he said, cooperation between the Navies of both countries is actively developing; in the context of this cooperation we shall exchange the visits of our ships.

    Federico Trillo also said that at these Moscow negotiations, they discussed joint exercises of all armed services and development of cooperation between the land forces and the Air Force.

    The Spanish Defence Minister underscored that the already existing cooperation between the intelligence services of the two countries, especially in combating terrorism, will be an important aspect of the commission's activity.

    According to him, at this meeting the Defence Ministers also discussed multilateral cooperation, in particular, with NATO. We exchanged opinions concerning concrete regions, including the situation in the Middle East. Though our points of view are not identical, we are bringing them closer, said the Spanish Defence Minister.

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