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US Cancels Joint Naval Exercise with Russia

By VOA News

13 August 2008

A senior U.S. defense official says the United States has canceled a joint naval exercise with Russia, scheduled for this week.

The official, who asked to remain anonymous, said Tuesday that in the wake of the fighting in Georgia, there is no way the joint exercise can take place at this time.

The naval exercise was to have started Friday off the Russian Pacific port of Vladivostok with Britain and France also taking part. There is no word whether they will still participate.

U.S. officials also say the Group of Eight world largest economies are considering whether to expel Russia and revert to the G 7.

The officials also say Washington may reconsider inviting Russia to join the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

Meanwhile, the U.S. State Department says another convoy of buses evacuating Americans from Georgia is scheduled to leave for neighboring Armenia Wednesday.

The State Department recommends all U.S. citizens leave Georgia and put off all non-essential travel there.

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