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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Assistance to Iran May Hit U.S. Aid

BRUSSELS, Belgium -- U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright warned Russia on Wednesday it could lose millions of dollars in American aid if it did not curb its assistance to Iran's missile program, a U.S. official said.

She made the threat at a meeting with new Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov at which the two also discussed the agenda for high-level talks in Moscow this week on Russia's faltering economic reform program, the senior official said.

Russia's cooperation with Iran's missile program has been a longstanding U.S. concern. Washington has had little success so far in persuading Moscow of its point of view.

The official said Albright "made clear we have a very large support program for Russian scientists, [destroying] biological and chemical weapons, and those programs are extremely important to us and to the Russians."

Albright urged the Russians to "make a maximum effort" to restrain cooperation with Iran in this area and said "in the absence of progress, it will be very hard for us to sustain" U.S. assistance programs, the official said.