News In Brief

USSR: Geneva talks end if US deploys missiles

Yuri Andropov has made it official: Moscow will break off the Geneva talks on European arms control if Western Europe starts deploying new American missiles in December.

The Soviet President, in remarks released Wednesday by Tass and scheduled for publication on Pravda's front page Thursday, said there was no sign of progress at Geneva. He blamed the United States for this.

The Kremlin leader announced no major changes in the Soviet position, which is that Moscow should retain enough of its SS-20 missiles to match the warheads on missiles currently deployed by Britain and France, which are outside joint-NATO control.

He did, however, announce one minor initiative that seemed aimed at China and Japan, and he hinted at possible Soviet flexibility on ways of limiting the superpowers' nuclear-capable airplanes in Europe.

The apparent ''Asian initiative'' consisted of a pledge that if the Geneva talks reached agreement on limiting medium-range missiles in Europe, Moscow would also stop deploying SS-20s in the Asian part of the Soviet Union.

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