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Monday, November 06, 2006

Russian Military Intelligence Ready For Action Anywhere: Official

Agence France-Presse
Nov 6, 2006 - 5:53:25 AM

Russia’s military intelligence agency is ready for action anywhere in the world, the head of the GRU agency said in a rare interview with the Izvestia daily published on Nov. 3.

”If needed, we are ready to act anywhere in the world,” said General Valentin Korabelnikov, listing successful operations in Afghanistan, Angola, Cambodia, Ethiopia, Iraq, Vietnam, Yugoslavia and “other crisis zones.”

The GRU is the most secretive government agency in Russia and has elite troops that have been deployed in fighting in Chechnya, as well as traditional intelligence agents.

The agency “has wiped out 3,000 fighters and arrested 1,500” in Chechnya since the start of the second conflict in the southern Russian province in 1999, Korabelnikov said.

A GRU fighter “can land day or night in tough conditions, has experience in the mountains, can orient himself in unfamiliar territory. He knows how to find food and how to build a shelter while staying hidden,” he said.

In the interview, Korabelnikov highlighted differences in security policy between the United States and Russia.

”For some, it’s important to fight against the so-called rogue states of the axis of evil that stop the progress of democracy,” Korabelnikov said.

”For us it’s more important to create a security cordon around Russia’s borders and try to normalize the situation in conflict zones,” he added.
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