FBI Director Discusses Terrorism Problems With Russian Interior Minister

During a telephone conversation with FBI Director Robert Mueller last night, Russian Interior Minister Boris Gryzlov said that Russian law-enforcement agencies would hand over any information in their possession relating to the activity of so-called "emissaries" of Osama bin Laden on Russian territory. The Interior Ministry's press service has reported that the minister emphasised the need for closer bilateral cooperation to find and detain specific members of international terrorist organisations. Above all, the matter in hand concerns operations to apprehend people involved in terrorist attacks in Chechnya and who are currently on the international wanted list. Russian law-enforcement agencies have put 63 such suspects on the wanted list. In his turn, the FBI director said that every possible assistance would be rendered to the Russian side. Moreover, according to Robert Mueller, the FBI will immediately inform Russian law-enforcement agencies about possible targets for terrorist attacks in the Russian Federation, if such information is obtained by the bureau. The FBI director also expressed his gratitude to Russian law-enforcement agencies for their professionalism and willingness to cooperate. Both men expressed the opinion that in a world of economic globalisation, open information and transport systems, the leading powers' law enforcement bodies needed to cooperate. Furthermore, crime has long been cross-border phenomenon, it was noted, while law and order forces have not been cooperating to a sufficiently high level. Prior to the explosions in New York and Washington, Boris Gryzlov had sent US Attorney General John Ashcroft a letter calling for the creation of a joint Russo-American anti-terrorist group, it was pointed out in the ministry press service.

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