Russia and Britain to relaunch strained ties

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Russia and Britain agreed Friday to renew ties recently strained by suspicions of murder and spying, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and British Prime Minister David Cameron said.

Meeting on the sidelines of the G8 summit in Canada, the leaders agreed to relaunch relations between Moscow and Britain and seek closer cooperation.

"We agreed that certain changes must be made in our relations," Medvedev told reporters, speaking through an interpreter.

"We agreed that our bilateral relations required the personal attention of the leaders of the two countries, both in terms of economic and other issues, and we're determined to make them more productive and more intense."

Cameron agreed, saying: "I think there's a real opportunity to put the bilateral relationship on a new footing."

The two countries have had a troubled relationship in recent years, colored by controversy over issues such as the death by poisoning of Russian former spy Alexander Litvinenko in London in 2006.

© 2010 AFP

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