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Russia, U.S. unlikely to agree on missile defense by end of Obama's tenure - U.S. envoy

RIA Novosti

22:36 27/05/2011 MOSCOW, May 27 (RIA Novosti) - Russia and the United States are unlikely to agree on the missile defense issue by the end of U.S. President Barack Obama's term, U.S. Ambassador to Russia, John Beyrle said on Friday.

"I think Russia and the United States will not manage to reach a consensus on this issue by the end of Obama's presidential term," Beyrle said in Russian during an interview with Ekho Moskvy radio station.

Earlier on Friday at the G8 summit in Deauville, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev expressed his dissatisfaction with how the negotiations with the United States on the missile defense shield are continuing, saying the sides are wasting time.

Moscow has been concerned by U.S. reluctance to provide legally binding guarantees that its European missile defense system will not be directed against Russia.

"We must receive guarantees that it is not directed at us. So far, no such guarantees have been given," Medvedev said.

Medvedev warned last Wednesday that Russia would have to build up its nuclear capability if NATO and the United States failed to reach an agreement with Moscow on European missile defense cooperation.

Moscow has warned it might pull out of the new START Treaty.

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