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    Russia's foreign minister said on Thursday that Moscow was against "narrowly-defined" military-political structures in the Asia-Pacific region, and called for pan-Asian efforts to deal with security issues.

    SINGAPORE, July 24 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's foreign minister said on Thursday that Moscow was against "narrowly-defined" military-political structures in the Asia-Pacific region, and called for pan-Asian efforts to deal with security issues.

    Sergei Lavrov was speaking in Singapore at an Association of the Southeast Asian Nations regional forum on peace and security issues. The forum is being attended by the organization's 10 member states and 17 other countries.

    "Security in the Asia-Pacific region should be all-inclusive and indivisible, and a result of concerted efforts by all members of the regional community," Lavrov told the forum.

    He said any kind of activity aimed at creating new international and regional alliances and mechanisms must enhance strategic balance, consider partners' legitimate security interests and be based on commonly acknowledged norms and principles of international law.

    There was much media speculation in late April that the U.S., South Korea and Japan might be thinking of restoring the Washington-Tokyo-Seoul military alliance, an important military bloc during the Cold War.

    The restoration of the alliance would automatically mean that Japan and South Korea would join the U.S.-led missile defense project in Northeast Asia, although South Korean military chiefs have previously been skeptical about the idea.

    Russia has also proposed its candidacy for co-chairing an ASEAN meeting on counterterrorism and cross-border crime in 2010. Lavrov called for including in the meeting's agenda security issues relating to energy infrastructure, including pipelines.

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