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    Russian President Vladimir Putin (right) and French President Francois Hollande meet in the Kremlin

    Russia, France to Boost Military, Intelligence Contacts - Kremlin Aide

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    Russia and France will boost bilateral military and intelligence communications and monitor their effectiveness.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Russia and France will boost bilateral military and intelligence communications and monitor their effectiveness, Russian presidential aide Yuri Ushakov said Friday.

    "We agreed that our military and intelligence services will carry out more intensive contacts. This agreement was reached yesterday. We will monitor how effective these contacts are," Ushakov said.

    Russian and French authorities agree that a ground operation is necessary in Syria, but must be carried out by the Syrians themselves, Ushakov said.

    "Yesterday's meeting was intense, thorough and fruitful. In particular, this is evidenced by the French foreign minister's remarks, there is an understanding of the need for a ground operation that would eliminate terrorists in Syria," Ushakov told reporters, adding that "this operation must first and foremost be carried out by Syrians themselves."

    Hollande's working visit to Moscow on Thursday concluded the president's week-long diplomatic tour that took place in the aftermath of the November 13 attacks in Paris, when extremists killed 130 people and injured over 350. Hollande met world leaders, focusing discussions on tackling global terrorism.

    After the Thursday meeting with Putin, Hollande spoke about coordinated efforts in fighting global terrorism. The leaders agreed to share intelligence and other information, the French leader said.

    France has begun exchanging information with Russian naval forces present in Mediterranean since the French Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier reached the area to conduct anti-terrorist strikes, Hollande said on Wednesday. The French president previously stressed the importance of intelligence sharing with Russia for coordinating efforts against ISIL.

    Related:

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    France Has No Plans to Intervene Militarily on Ground in Syria – Hollande
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    cooperation, Yuri Ushakov, Russia, France
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