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    MOSCOW, February 12, 2004. (RIA Novosti) - Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov warned against the danger of associating some or other countries with terrorism.

    "Some people assert that the Middle East region possesses a nutrient medium for extremist aspirations. We should not associate terrorism with some or other countries, otherwise we shall enter the path of those who speak of war between civilisations," said the minister at the Thursday meeting with members of the State Duma international committee.

    Igor Ivanov thinks that since the majority of the population in the Middle East professes Islam, there is "a danger to associate terrorism with a definite culture." The minister spoke again of the necessity of creating a legal basis for the fight against terrorism. According to him, Russia stands for developing a legal framework of the fight against terrorism "both unilaterally and jointly with the international community." According to the Russian Foreign Minister, "as a result of a difficult work, the international community has already started to understand what the notion of terrorism means, and therefore the convention about the international fight against terrorism, which is now being drafted by the United Nations, will help to find a general formula of what terrorism is." The Russian Foreign Minister also warned against interfering into the internal affairs of the states under the guise of combating terrorism. The possibility of such interference emphasises the necessity of creating a legal basis in the given sphere, Moscow believes.

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