• Short Summary

    The French Defence Minister Robert Galley ended a week-long official visit to the Soviet Union on Monday (December 10).

  • Description

    The French Defence Minister Robert Galley ended a week-long official visit to the Soviet Union on Monday (December 10).

    M. Galley made the visit at a time when relations were strained between the two countries over the Middle East war.

    The Kremlin came under fire from France because of French suspicions of concerted Soviet-American activities in the Middle East. French criticism was so strong that Moscow threatened to postpone a summit between President Pompidou and Soviet leader, Leonid Brezhnev, scheduled for January.

    But M. Galley was warmly greeted in Moscow by the Soviet Defence Minister, Marshal Andrei Grechko, and the Civil Aviation Minister, Marshal Boris Buagayev. M. Galley's trip -- which took him to Moscow, Leningrad, Kiev and Crimea -- was arranged in return for a visit to France by Marshal Grechko. it followed a pattern of friendly contacts between french and Soviet military chiefs.

    M. Galley also had talks with the ?Soviet president Nikolai Podgorny.

    SYNOPSIS: French Defence Minister M. Robert Galley is greeted by chairman of the Presidium of the USSR Supreme Soviet Nikolai Podgorny and Soviet Defence Minister Marshal Grechko on his arrival in Moscow.

    He was paying a return visit following Marshal Grechko's visit to France last year and his trip was due to take him to Kiev, Leningrad and the Crimea.

    His reception was cordial despite the recent signs of a cooling in the relations between France and the Soviet Union. France has criticised Soviet policy to such an extent that the Soviet Union is threatening to postpone a summit between Mr. Brezhnev and President Pompidou scheduled for next month.

    M. Galley's talks were concentrated on Franco-Soviet military cooperation including the exchange of experts and holding joint exercises.

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