Current US administration is easier to deal with – Medvedev

There's a fairly good chance Russia and the US will sign a new START agreement before the current one expires in December. Russian President Dmitry Medvedev spoke on this and other burning issues to the Russian media.

"You know there is definitely a chance to reach an agreement, because the current American administration has shown quite a sound interest in this issue. It didn't work out with the previous administration, as they didn't consider it among their international policy priorities. I had a meeting in London, and then the US President visited Moscow, and while he was in Moscow we agreed on a number of documents defining how we are going to work on a new Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty," said President Medvedev, talking to Russia's First channel.

He underlined that the work is underway.

"A large team of professionals has been sent from Russia to Europe in order to continue work on this agreement together with the American experts. The previous START is effective until December 5 this year. The negotiators have been given an overall objective to complete their work in time for this date. I think there is a fairly good chance, but both parties need to be wise and ready to listen to each other and understand certain circumstances in force today. There is no doubt this issue is of paramount importance, because the long-term goal is a nuclear-free peace," the President said.

"Yes, today it's a general objective which many think is something impossible to reach. And that a world free of nuclear weapons is an ideal world which must be on our agenda. Today we have nuclear powers which possess nuclear weapons on a so-called conventional basis. There are also de-facto members of the nuclear club who deny possessing nuclear weapons, while everyone knows they do. Growth of this club is against our deepest interests. As in this case the situation may grow uncontrollably. The non-proliferation objective is highly important, and while we work on non-proliferation, we should work on reduction at the same time: the reduction of strategic arms, both carriers and nuclear warheads. Today, we all have the chance to push this process forward, and that's what we will do, and that's what I'm urging our American partners to do too," said Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev.