Putin urges cooperation between Russian, US intelligence agencies

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The Russian and U.S. intelligence services should join efforts to fight international terrorism, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday.

"Restoration of dialogue with special services of the United States and other members from the North Atlantic Treaty Organization is in the common interest," Putin said in an address to a meeting of senior Federal Security Service (FSB) officials.

He said bloody conflicts involving international terrorist groups are plaguing a number of Middle Eastern, Asian and African countries.

"Even a simple exchange of terrorists' funding and personnel information will greatly increase the efficiency of anti-terror missions," said Putin.

He also called for strengthened cooperation with the United Nations, the Collective Security Treaty Organization and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.

Over the past year, many of the existing challenges and threats have aggravated, rather than abated, the Russian president said.

Attempts to interfere in Russia's internal affairs with the aim of destabilizing its social and political situation have not stopped, Putin told the officials.

He asked the FSB to continue to foil terrorist activities and prevent cyber attacks on Russian government data servers as the number of such hackings tripled in 2016 from the previous year.

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