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Jan 11, 1:41 PM EST

Russia, US hold talks about nuclear pact, Putin says


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MOSCOW (AP) -- Russian President Vladimir Putin says Moscow is holding negotiations with Washington regarding a pivotal nuclear arms pact.

Putin said the U.S. plans to re-equip some of the nuclear capable aircraft and submarines to carry conventional weapons has drawn Russian concerns.

He noted Thursday that while the U.S. plans don't contradict the 2010 U.S.-Russian New START nuclear arms reduction treaty, Moscow is entitled to monitor the modifications to make sure there is no chance for a rollback to nuclear capability in the future.

Speaking at a meeting with Russian newspaper editors, Putin said "a dialogue is going on, and I hope it will be positive."

The New START allows U.S. and Russia to have no more than 1,550 deployed nuclear warheads each. It expires in 2021, but can be extended.

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