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Russia 'To Suffer' Economically And Politically

Miliband says the West doesn't want a new Cold War.
DUBLIN -- Russia will suffer politically and economically for its military intervention in Georgia even though it may have won short-term gains, according to British Foreign Secretary David Miliband.

Moscow is now more isolated and less trusted than it was a month ago, Miliband wrote in an opinion piece in the "Irish Examiner" newspaper.

Russia crushed its southern neighbor in a brief war last month after Georgia tried to recapture by force its pro-Moscow, separatist region of South Ossetia.

It has drawn Western condemnation by pushing beyond the disputed area, bombing and deploying troops deep inside Georgia proper.

"It has made short-term military gains, but over time it will feel economic and political losses. If Russia truly wants respect and influence, it must change course," Miliband wrote.

European Union leaders agreed on September 1 to postpone talks with Russia on a new partnership pact due later this month until Moscow withdraws its troops to preconflict positions in Georgia. The EU avoided imposing sanctions on its largest energy supplier.

"Isolating Russia would be counterproductive, because its international economic integration is the best discipline on its politics," Miliband said.

Miliband said Europeans needed Russian gas but Russia also needed European markets and investment.

"Our approach must be hard-headed engagement," he said.

"Russian President Dmitry Medvedev says that he is not afraid of a new Cold War. We don't want one. He has a big responsibility not to start one," Miliband said.