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Obama, Medvedev In 'Constructive' Arms Deal Phone Call


MOSCOW (Reuters) -- U.S. President Barack Obama and his Russian counterpart Dmitry Medvedev had a "constructive" telephone call today in which they discussed signing a landmark nuclear arms deal "in the near future," the Kremlin said.

"The heads of state in detail and objectively discussed topical issues pertaining to Russian-U.S. relations, including approaching signing in the near future of a new treaty on strategic arms reduction," the Kremlin said on official site kremlin.ru.

It added the telephone call was conducted in a "constructive" spirit and that the United States had initiated the conversation.

Productive meetings between top U.S. officials and their Russian counterparts in Moscow last week have brought the sides close to agreement on a successor to START, ministry spokesman Igor Lyakin-Frolov told Reuters today.

"The talks were successful, and as a result we can hope that it will take just a few weeks for negotiators to come up with a document," Lyakin-Frolov said.

In London, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said the Moscow talks brought "very important steps" towards an agreement and that negotiators are expected to bridge remaining gaps between their positions within a few weeks.
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