Nurgaliyev and the G8
Russian Interior Minister shared his views on fighting terrorism with G8 counterparts
Senior law enforcement officials from G8 countries convened Thursday in Moscow for two days of talks on combating terrorism and organized crime. Protection of transportation and communication networks should top the list of security concerns, Interior Minister Rashid Nurgaliyev said.
Sergei Sobyanin, head of the presidential administration, said Russian authorities had devised new strategies for shielding railways and metros from attack. Nurgaliyev also called for fighting illegal immigration and Internet-based extremists and terrorists. “The Internet is increasingly used by terrorists as a means to disseminate information containing detailed instructions for building bombs and other weapons,” Nurgaliyev said. Terrorists are routinely recruited online and propaganda and video-taped recordings of terrorist activities are widely distributed, he added.
Nurgaliyev and Sobyanin also warned against illegal immigration, with Sobyanin saying it corrupted the labor market and stoked ethnic tensions. He called on foreign governments to deny asylum to wanted terrorists and other criminals. The comment appeared aimed at Britain and the United States, which have granted asylum to Chechen separatists.
Britain’s attorney general, Peter Goldsmith, praised Russian law enforcement efforts in fighting terrorism and organized crime. He also called for illegal drugs to be addressed. Interpol’s general secretary, Ronald Noble, said the creation of a huge database of criminal records compiled by police in different countries had helped fight terrorism and identity theft.
Established in 2003, the database includes profiles of 10,192 suspected terrorists and data on more than 11 million stolen passports, Noble said. The database has helped many police investigations, including in Britain, he said.
The meeting also drew Lise Prokop, the interior minister of Austria, which now chairs the European Union, and Franco Frattini, the EU’s justice and home affairs commissioner.
US will take ‘tough decisions’ as trade talks hit critical moment
16 June 2006
President George W. Bush said yesterday that the Doha round of world trade talks had reached “a critical moment” and that he would press for further progress when he meets European Union leaders in Austria next week.
“Countries in Europe have to make a tough decision on farming, and the G20 countries have to make a tough decision on manufacturing. And the United States is prepared to make a tough decision along with them,” the president said at the summit of the Initiative for Global Development in Washington. But he acknowledged that the talks faced “tough sledding right now”.
Mr Bush’s comments come as trade ministers are also set to meet in Geneva later this month to try to break the deadlock in the negotiations.
Susan Schwab, who was formally sworn in at the White House yesterday as the new US trade representative, said last week the US had many allies in its call for an ambitious agreement that would produce deep cuts to tariffs on agriculture and manufactured goods, as well as reductions in farm subsidies.
But the US appears to be increasingly isolated in holding out for such a deal.
A top aide to Kamal Nath, the Indian commerce minister, told Reuters in Geneva yesterday that the USwas the obstacle to a “moderately ambitious” agreement.
“The rest of the world could reach an agreement on a modestly ambitious outcome,” he said. “The real problem is going to be the United States.”
The White House is under growing pressure from US farmers and their support-ers in Congress not toagree to any deal thatdoes not involve far greater cuts in barriers to USfarm exports than havebeen offered so far byEurope and by the G20group of developing countries.
Earlier this week, Saxby Chambliss, the Republican chairman of the Senate agriculture committee, warned Pascal Lamy, director-general of the World Trade Organisation, that Congress would rather see the administration walk away from the deal than accept a package that did not open bignew markets for US producers. He told reporters that Congress was “not under any pressure politically to complete a Doha agreement”.
“If Europeans think they’ve got us where we’ve got to have an agreement, they’re wrong,” he said.