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Bush, Chirac to Meet Twice Early Next Year


President Bush and French President Jacques Chirac plan to meet twice in the coming weeks as they try to mend relations strained by the Iraq war.

French and U.S. officials say Mr. Chirac will visit the White House in early 2005, at a date to be determined.

They say the two leaders will also meet on February 22 in Brussels, the first stop on Mr. Bush's three-day trip to Europe.

Mr. Chirac was one of several European leaders who harshly criticized the U.S. invasion of Iraq.

But both sides have signaled they want relations to improve. The White House has said repeatedly that the United States and Europe have shared values such as a belief in democracy, and common interests such as the war on terror.

Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.

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