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U.S. Plans To Go Ahead With Russia Talks


U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (left) and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel (combo photo)

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (left) and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel (combo photo)

U.S. officials say Washington plans to go ahead with high-level talks with Russia's defense and foreign ministers.

The officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, said U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel will meet their Russian counterparts -- Sergei Lavrov and Sergei Shoigu -- in Washington on August 9.

The so-called "2+2" meeting comes as ties between Washington and Moscow have become strained following Russia's decision to grant temporary asylum to fugitive U.S. intelligence leaker Edward Snowden.

That decision has reportedly prompted President Barack Obama to rethink whether to hold a summit in Moscow with Russian President Vladimir Putin next month.

Washington wants to put Snowden on trial for espionage after he leaked information to journalists about large-scale U.S. Internet and phone surveillance programs.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AFP

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