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    UNITED STATES IN NO MOOD TO SURROUND RUSSIA WITH BASES

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    WASHINGTON, February 6th, 2004 (RIA Novosti) -- The United States has no intention of establishing its military bases along Russia's borders. This was disclosed to RIA Novosti at a briefing by Elizabeth Jones, Assistant Secretary of State for Europe and Eurasia.

    In her words, the US Administration's position on this issue was stated absolutely clearly by US Secretary of State Colin Powell, who informed the Russian leadership about this during his recent Moscow visit.

    The United States, which is determined to prune its forces in Europe, has no plans for building large stationary overseas military bases, which would accommodate permanent troop contingents, servicemen's families, and which would also have the entire required infrastructure.

    At the same time, Jones noted that the Bush Administration was now assessing the requirements of US military formations stationed overseas. These assessments heed future objectives, due to be accomplished by Washington's NATO allies, as well as possible US requirements concerning rapid troop and combat-hardware lifting to hot spots.

    Quite possibly, the United States might require temporary refuelling stations for such transfers; these stations would be run by small units. At the same time, she stressed that this didn't imply military bases in the traditional meaning of the word.

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