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Russia, U.S. have good chance of arms control deal - Lavrov


MOSCOW, May 12 (RIA Novosti) - Russia and the United States have a good chance of reaching an agreement on a new arms control treaty, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Tuesday after informal talks in the U.S.

The two countries have pledged to draft a new arms reduction treaty to replace the Cold War-era START 1 treaty that expires in December since President Barack Obama took office in January.

"The informal rounds of talks ... have helped both countries understand that they have a good chance of overcoming differences and agreeing terms on controls over strategic offensive weapons and nonproliferation worldwide," Lavrov told reporters who were onboard the plane from the U.S.

The first round of "full-format" talks on the new treaty are due to take place in Moscow on May 18, with the aim of providing a draft for the pact before Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and his U.S. counterpart meet in July.

Lavrov visited the U.S. to prepare for the summit and met with Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and other officials.

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