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Bush: Europe, U.S. share 'common dangers'

Bush: Europe, U.S. share 'common dangers'

ST. PETERSBURG, Russia (CNN) -- President Bush said Saturday he is reaffirming ties with European nations, debating how to proceed in the war against terrorism and observing the beginning of a new era of U.S. relations with Russia during his overseas trip.

"Today, Europe is growing in unity and peace, and that benefits our country," Bush said in his weekly radio address from St. Petersburg, the hometown of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

"Europe and America share common dangers and common values," Bush said. "We have the opportunity and the duty to build a world that is safer and better."

Russia is the second stop on the president's European tour. He is scheduled to leave Sunday for Paris to visit French President Jacques Chirac.

"The nations of the European Union have made strong contributions to the war on terror," Bush said. "And the volume of our annual trade and investment relationship is nearly $2 trillion, helping workers, consumers and families on both continents."

The president pointed to headway made by nations such as Germany, which he said had overcome a troubled history "to become a force for good."

German police and intelligence agents are helping in the war against terrorism, and German troops have served -- and some have died -- in the U.S.-led war in Afghanistan.

"I thanked the German people for their support and sacrifice," said Bush, who stopped Wednesday in Berlin at the start of his weeklong trip.

Speaking of Russia, Bush said, "After centuries of isolation and suspicion, Russia is finding its place in the family of Europe. And that is truly historic. The partnership of America and Russia will continue to grow."

Later in his trip, Bush will visit Rome, Italy, for the first meeting of a new NATO-Russian Council, which recently was set up to boost cooperation on issues such as counterterrorism.

Russia is not a member of the 19-member North Atlantic Treaty Organization, but as a partner it will help design policies to fight terrorism and other threats while supporting peacekeeping operations.




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