Vladimir Putin: Russia And USA Made Certain Progress Towards Achieving Understanding On Abm Treaty

According to Vladimir Putin, Russia and the USA have made "certain progress" while discussing missile defence. "We made certain progress as far as the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty is concerned," said the Russian President at the press conference in Shanghai. "We have come to realize that working out an agreement is possible." Putin pointed out, once again, that Moscow continues to regard the 1972 ABM Treaty as "an important element of universal stability." "But we agree with the viewpoint that we must look into the future and react to new threats adequately," he stressed. On his part, George W. Bush said that the US has not yet begun its withdrawal from the 1972 ABM Treaty but thinks the pact is "obsolete and even dangerous." According to Putin, both leaders have "confirmed their mutual intention to reduce strategic offensive weapons." The task they are facing now is to discuss the scale and methods of reduction. The two presidents have also exchanged opinions on the situation around Iraq, Balkans and Mideast. According to Putin, he is planning to discuss the future of Russia-NATO relations with Bush. After the joint press conference, Putin and Bush resumed their talks at a business supper.

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