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3 March 2005 -- Russian President Vladimir Putin today said he wants to help with professional training in Iraq, and said his country is interested in developing conditions in Iraq that would favor expansion of Russian business there.
Putin told Vladimir Chamov, Russia's ambassador to Iraq, that Russia intends to continue with its tradition of providing "material assistance" for the training of "cadres" in Iraq.
Russian news agencies are quoting Putin as also saying Russia has a long history of good relations with Iraq, and that it is a priority that conditions be created for "the return of Russian business to Iraq."
Like France and Germany, Russia strongly opposed the U.S.-led war in Iraq in 2003.