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White House Says Obama Welcomes Putin Cooperation on Iran

March 1 (Bloomberg) -- President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin had a “constructive conversation” on issues including containing Iran’s nuclear program and dealing with the violence in in Syria, the White House said.

Obama, who called his Russian counterpart, “welcomed strong U.S.-Russian cooperation” in addressing Iran’s nuclear program in the talks involving the so-called P5+1 -- the U.S., U.K., France, Germany, China and Russia, the administration said in a statement.

The two men also discussed this week’s meetings on Syria between Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Berlin.

“The two Presidents agreed on the need to advance a political transition to end the violence as soon as possible and the importance of Secretary Kerry and Foreign Minister Lavrov continuing their engagement on Syria,” the White House said.

Russia has supplied Syrian President Bashar al-Assad with weapons and vetoed United Nations sanctions against the country.

In addition, Obama and Putin discussed the “path toward a more substantial trade and investment relationship between the United States and Russia,” the White House said.

Obama and Putin will meet in June at the Group of 8 Summit in Northern Ireland, and the U.S. president will visit St. Petersburg, Russia, for the Group of 20 meeting in September, the White House said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Julianna Goldman in Washington at jgoldman6@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Steven Komarow at skomarow1@bloomberg.net

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