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    EUROPEAN DIPLOMATS CONDEMN TERRORIST ATTACK IN GROZNY

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    MOSCOW, May 13 (RIA Novosti) - Irish Ambassador to Moscow Justin Harman and chief of the European Commission representation in Russia Richard Wright condemned the May 9 terrorist attack in Grozny and also expressed condolences to the near and dear of the victims and those wounded in this terrorist attack.

    We bluntly condemn this terrorist attack, which left victims, including Chechen President Akhmad Kadyrov, said the Irish Ambassador to Moscow when speaking at an extended session of the international committee of the Federation Council. Ireland is holding the EU rotating presidency in the first half of 2004.

    The Irish leadership has sharply condemned this assault, no political goals can be justified by such a ruthless terrorist attack, he said.

    Harman Justin expressed the hope that a political process would continue in Chechnya, which is supposed to bring a long-term settlement to the republic. We are very hopeful that this political process will be continued, despite such terrorist attacks, he said.

    Russia and the EU should expand co-operation in providing security of the regions adjoining their borders, Justin Harman believes. In particular, Harman noted that the EU expected further co-operation with Russia in the Transdniestrian settlement and the Belarussian issue. He added that these issues would be discussed at the forthcoming summit between Russia and the EU.

    The EU gave a high assessment to Russia's participation in the constructive settlement of tensions between Tbilisi and Batumi, said the Irish ambassador.

    In his words, it is worth noting excellent co-operation between Russia and the EU on many international issues.

    In particular, I'd like to note our efficient interaction in the Middle East problems and the Iraqi issue," said the Irish ambassador.

    He also emphasised that Russia and the EU had managed to demonstrate political maturity in overcoming current obstacles in bilateral relations. Harman stressed that the upcoming summit would above all seek to add practice to the idea of four common spaces (economic, human rights and freedoms, internal and external security, education and science, including cultural aspects).

    Richard Wright who attended the session of the international committee in turn expressed condolences to the near and dear of the victims of the May 9 terrorist attack in Grozny and also to Russia as a whole.

    Wright also noted the productivity of co-operation between Russia and the EU.

    In the past two years, Russia and the EU have demonstrated their ability to find a common language in solving common problems. This is a very good sign boosting confidence in the success of further co-operation, said the representative of the European Commission.

    He also noted that after the important short-term problems were solved, the two partners should focus on the formation of the four spaces.

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