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Putin: plans to use force against Iran "counterproductive"
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09:10, April 07, 2009

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The plans to use force against Iran is "counterproductive," said Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin when presenting a government report to the State Duma, lower house of the parliament, on Monday.

"We believe that force has been overused on the international arena lately. Instead of conducting unpleasant long talks, problems are too often resolved through the use of crude force which is counterproductive," said the prime minister.

Meanwhile, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told media on Monday that Russia welcomes the U.S. position to normalize relations with Iran in all spheres.

Lavrov hoped that the "Americans will be ready to sit down to the table of negotiations with Iran," and Iran will "envisage the launch of full-format negotiations on the nuclear issue, as well as on trade and economic cooperation and regional security."

Earlier on March 20, U.S. President Barack Obama sent a message via video to the Iranian leadership and people, offering a "new beginning" of engagement with the country.

While admitting "serious differences" which have grown over time between the two sides, he also said that "my administration is now committed to diplomacy that addresses the full range of issues before us, and to pursuing constructive ties."


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