After welcoming U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Defense Secretary Robert Gates to the Russian capital, Medvedev said: "There are issues where we continue to have different positions - these are missile defense and strategic nuclear weapons - but there is a will to move forward, and we need to create a base for continuity in relations between Russia and the United States. We have every opportunity to achieve this."
Rice and Gates are on a visit to Moscow to meet with their Russian counterparts for talks on Washington's controversial plans to install a radar in the Czech Republic and a missile base in Poland, which Moscow considers a national security threat.
Rice congratulated Medvedev on his election victory and said the countries need to strengthen ties to provide a strong base on which to improve relations.
The U.S. officials also met with President Vladimir Putin in the Kremlin, for talks which again focused on means of overcoming disputes between the countries.
Putin told the secretary of state he believed key disputes would be resolved, and stressed the importance of Tuesday's talks between the countries' top diplomats and defense chiefs.
"We believe that dialogue in the 2+2 format is highly important," Putin said.
At the meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov, Rice and Gates are expected to discuss the U.S. missile shield plans, Russia's unilateral moratorium on the Conventional Forces in Europe treaty, and a new strategic arms reduction treaty to replace START-I, which expires in December 2009.
At the last round of '2+2' talks in Moscow last October, the four ministers failed to reach an agreement on the missile defense issue.
Washington offered late last year to allow Russian officials access to the proposed sites to ensure the radar is not targeted at Russia and that interceptor missiles are kept non-operational until Iran's long-range missiles have been proved as a threat. NATO's spokesman said last week he believed the U.S. proposals were reasonable.