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Key European neutral lands agree firmer military needed

Europe's four main neutral countries, Austria, Finland, Sweden, and Switzerland, agreed Tuesday on the need to build up credible military forces. Austrian Defense Minister Friedhelm Frischenschlager, who initiated the meeting, said, ''It is obvious that we small countries can only create relative security conditions. However, we need a credible defense system to guard against provocation, carelessness, and misunderstanding.''

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The two-day meeting focused on the concept of armed defense of neutral states and explored possibilities for closer cooperation in security matters, including at international conferences.