DATE=4/27/2000 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT TITLE=U-S / RUSSIA TALKS (L-ONLY) NUMBER=2-261789 BYLINE=KYLE KING DATELINE=STATE DEPARTMENT CONTENT= VOICED AT: INTRO: Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov has wrapped up three days of intensive discussions on arms control issues in Washington. As VOA's Kyle King reports, the two sides continue to disagree about the need to amend a key arms-control agreement that stands in the way of a proposed U-S missile defense system. TEXT: Speaking to reporters after talks with Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, the Russian Foreign Minister said there are considerable differences of opinion about U-S plans for a national missile defense system. The United States has been hoping to negotiate amendments to the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty to allow the deployment of a limited missile defense. U-S officials say the system is needed to defend against potential attacks from small numbers of nuclear weapons from rogue states like Iran or North Korea. Foreign Minister Ivanov, speaking through an interpreter, said Russia remains opposed to changes in the ABM treaty. /// IVANOV / INTERPRETER ACT /// We believe -- and it has been stressed at the highest level -- the ABM Treaty of 1972 should remain a cornerstone of the strategic stability and the basis for strategic stability in the world. /// END ACT /// During his earlier meetings with President Clinton and other administration officials, Mr. Ivanov offered some alternative proposals. U-S officials said they were intrigued by the ideas, which deal with shorter-range missile systems that are allowed under the A-B-M treaty. However, Secretary of State Albright says the Russian proposals do not fully address U-S concerns about the threat of long-range missiles launched by rogue states. /// ALBRIGHT ACT /// We have spoken before, and we did again in this meeting, about cooperating on theater missile defense, and we think it can supplement but it is not sufficient to deal with the problems that we have, and so I think we will continue to talk about it. /// END ACT /// In addition to arms control, Ms. Albright and the Russian Foreign Minister also discussed a range of other issues, including Chechnya, Kosovo, the Middle East and North Korea -- issues that are expected to be discussed again when President Clinton and Russian President Vladimir Putin hold summit talks in Moscow this June. That summit is also expected to include talks on the so-called Start-Three Treaty, which would slash U-S and Russian nuclear arsenals even further than previous strategic arms reduction agreements. Secretary of State Albright says the Clinton administration will continue to pursue its arms control agenda despite opposition from conservative (U-S) Senator Jesse Helms. Senator Helms said Wednesday that any new agreements negotiated by the Clinton administration during its remaining months in office would be dead on arrival [have no chance of passage] in the U-S Senate. Secretary of State Albright says she disagrees with the senator, and does not think the U-S public wants a pause in arms control talks for the rest of the year. (Signed) NEB/KBK/WTW 27-Apr-2000 18:36 PM EDT (27-Apr-2000 2236 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .