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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

U.S., Russia Work to Reduce Nuclear Warheads

APPresident of the United States Barack Obama and British Prime Minister Gordon Brown holding a joint news conference at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London on Wednesday.
The White House said Wednesday that the United States and Russia will announce talks to limit the number of nuclear warheads.

White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said U.S. President Barack Obama and President Dmitry Medvedev will announce negotiations on Wednesday when they meet in London. They would be the first major arms control negotiations since 1997.

The two countries want to reduce the number, but the leaders have not settled on a specific goal, Gibbs said.

Earlier Wednesday, Obama acknowledged strained relations between the two nations but says the time has come for them to emphasize areas where they can work together.

Answering questions in London at a news conference with British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, Obama lamented tensions and "drift" between Moscow and Washington in recent years.

He told reporters, "I have no interest in papering those over" but also said the two countries share many interests, including the goal of reducing nuclear stockpiles and the threat of terrorism and stabilizing the world economy.

The specter of nuclear weapons falling into the hands of terrorists "continues to be the greatest threat against humanity," Obama said.

"What better project to start on than seeing if we can make progress on that front?" Obama said. "I think we can."