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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Russia Can Use Ireland's Experience




Prime Minister Vladimir Putin told visiting Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern on Wednesday that Russia needed to use Ireland's experience in fighting terrorism after Moscow was hit by two devastating bombs in four days.


Putin and Ahern, who is the first Irish prime minister to visit Russia, signed an agreement on fighting crime and terrorism and another on combating drug trafficking.


"It is not something that we are immensely proud of, but we have amassed a vast amount of information on this subject," Ahern said at a news conference after signing the documents.


Ireland helped Britain during its 30-year fight with the Irish Republican Army, which wants to unite Northern Ireland, part of the United Kingdom, with the south.


The two nations are also battling extreme loyalist groups who want to preserve the status quo in Northern Ireland.


"It is ironic and sad that we are signing this agreement this week when our colleagues in the Russian Federation are having these difficulties," Ahern said.


"Russia is confronting the problem of drug trafficking on a scale not known before. It is also fighting terrorism. All these issues are very sensitive for us," Putin said.


"Clearly, our experts have a lot of things to discuss with each other," Putin said of exchanges of visits by Irish and Russian crime and terrorism fighters.


Putin and Ahern also discussed trade and business issues.