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    West, Russia Should Focus on Short-Term Nuclear Projects - Ex-UK Defense Sec

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    Former British Defense Secretary Desmond Browne claims that the United States and Europe should cooperate with Russia on short-term nuclear-related projects to rebuild trust that has deteriorated in recent years.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The United States and Europe should cooperate with Russia on short-term nuclear-related projects to rebuild trust that has deteriorated in recent years, former British Defense Secretary Desmond Browne told Sputnik on Thursday.

    "We should do things of common interest to start to rebuild that trust and confidence because we have a collective obligation under the non-proliferation treaty to disarm," Browne said. "We should concentrate on short-term things that we can deal with."

    He explained that these short-term issues can include reduction of the risk of accidental use of nuclear weapons and ways to better secure radiological materials. Cooperation on stopping terrorists who may be trying to access nuclear materials should also be considered, Browne added.

    The former UK defense head said Russia and the western nations should not jump directly to discussions on the number of nuclear weapons or modernization programs.

    Browne made the comment on the sidelines of a book presentation event hosted by the International Luxembourg Forum on Preventing Nuclear Catastrophe and in the Nuclear Threat Initiative in Washington, DC.

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Thursday that Russia is ready for dialogue with the United States on the reduction of strategic nuclear weapons and believes that more countries need to be involved in the process.

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