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Medvedev denies Iran-missile shield tradeoff with U.S.


MADRID, March 3 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's president denied on Tuesday media reports claiming that Washington had pledged to drop its Central European missile shield plans if Moscow helped resolve Iran's controversial nuclear program.

A number of media outlets, including the New York Times and Russian business daily Kommersant, reported on Monday that a letter sent by Obama to Medvedev had stated that the U.S. was ready to give up its plans to deploy missile shield elements in Central Europe in exchange for Russia's assistance on the Iranian nuclear program.

"We are in correspondence, but no tradeoffs have been discussed, I assure you," Dmitry Medvedev told a news conference in Madrid.

Medvedev said however on Tuesday that he viewed the United States' readiness to address missile defense problems as a positive sign.

"If the new U.S. administration shows common sense in this regard and proposes a new setup, one which would suit all Europeans, as well as the U.S. itself, and which would, needless to say, also be acceptable to our country, we'd be ready to discuss it," he said.

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