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9/30/03 - BUSH ON U.S. AND RUSSIA - 2003-10-01

The Cold War days are over. Soviet Communism has long since ceased to be a threat to world peace. In recent years, the U.S. and Russia have made progress in building a new relationship. One that, as President George W. Bush describes, is both broad and strong:

“Russia and the United States are allies in the war on terror. Both of our nations have suffered at the hands of terrorists, and both of our governments are taking actions to stop them. No cause justifies terror. Terrorists must be opposed wherever they spread chaos and destruction, including Chechnya. A lasting solution to that conflict will require an end to terror, respect for human rights, and a political settlement that leads to free and fair elections.”

On his recent visit to the United States, Russian President Vladimir Putin met with Mr. Bush. They discussed the war against terrorism:

“President Putin and I talked about expanding our cooperation in Iraq and Afghanistan. The president and I agree that America, Russia, and the entire world will benefit from the advance of stability and freedom in these nations, because free and stable nations do not breed ideologies of murder or threaten people of other lands.”

The U.S. and Russia, said President Bush, are determined “to fight terror, to keep peace in troubled regions, and stop the spread of weapons of mass destruction”:

“We strongly urge North Korea to completely, verifiably and irreversibly end its nuclear programs. We strongly urge Iran to comply fully with all of its obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation treaty. We’re seeking to intensify our missile defense cooperation, because both of our countries are threatened by outlaw regimes that could be armed with deadly weapons."

Mr. Bush also pointed to the “growing economic relationship” between the U.S. and Russia. Clearly, as President Bush said, “Old suspicions are giving way to new understanding and respect.”