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Russia Cites Importance of Relations with United States

Russia has cited the importance of relations with the United States, but expressed some concern a day after President Bush criticized democracy in Russia.

Russia's ambassador to the United States, Yuri Ushakov, says the two nations must make concerted efforts in the nuclear field, and also share goals in the energy sphere.

Writing in The Washington Post  newspaper, Mr. Ushakov also said it is inadmissible to move in the direction of demonizing Russia.

He also said Russia has been troubled by some U.S. actions, particularly in Iraq, but respectfully presents its view, rather than try to undermine America's image or interests.

In Brussels Monday, President Bush urged Russia to renew a commitment to democracy and the rule of law.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov described Mr. Bush's comments as a call for a strategic partnership to fight terrorism and the spread of weapons of mass destruction.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and Reuters.

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