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    POST-SOVIET CENTRAL ASIA TO JOIN ANTI-DRUG CAUSE, CALLS RUSSIA'S DEFENCE MINISTER

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    MUNICH, February 8, 2004. (RIA Novosti) - Central Asian countries on the Commonwealth of Independent States ought to join efforts against rampant drug traffic from Afghanistan, deems Sergei Ivanov, Russia's Defence Minister.

    "I expect temporary coalitions to emerge ever more often in the 21st century. One of such coalitions is now active in Afghanistan. I have insistently called to put an end to drug traffic from Afghanistan to Western Europe and to Russia via other CIS countries.

    "I also proposed to NATO and the European Union to involve in their alliance Central Asian CIS countries - for instance, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan," he said to a news conference in Munich.

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