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One solution would be to use \unskip like suggested by @StevenB.Segletes. But instead I'd prefer to use \@bsphack\@esphack, as \unskip would gobble a space before \st, even if there is no space following it (the following illustrates this). Additionally I'd use \ifhmode for the \unskip solution, as you'd typically not want to remove any vertical space, and ...


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