ecretary of State Alexander M. Haig Jr. and Soviet Foreign Minister Andrei Gromyko met for five hours today in what Haig later described as "a discussion of the broad principles of U.S.-Soviet relations," including a review of President Reagan's arms control proposals.
Haig said the two will meet again Saturday to discuss regional issues. These are certain to include the Israeli invasion of Lebanon and an attempt by Haig to gauge Soviet attitudes toward U.S. efforts to resolve that crisis.
Haig said the U.S. side today reviewed all of Reagan's proposals for control of conventional arms and nuclear weapons of intercontinental and medium range. He said Gromyko had given a Soviet reaction, but Haig did not elaborate.
Haig also turned aside questions about whether they had discussed a possible meeting between Reagan and Soviet President Leonid I. Brezhnev. Despite speculation about such a summit for this fall, the administration is known to have become increasingly wary about chances for a successful summit.
This caution is especially pronounced as the two nations prepare to resume strategic-arms talks in Geneva June 29, engaging in a duel of proposals and marshaling support for their own bargaining positions.
The meeting today took place against the background of the U.N. General Assembly's special five-week session on disarmament.
The core of U.S. disarmament proposals is Reagan's call May 9 at Eureka College in Illinois for both sides to make deep cuts in ground missile arsenals.
However, such missiles are the backbone of the Soviet Union's long-range nuclear forces, and Brezhnev rejected Reagan's proposals, charging that they are designed to guarantee U.S. military superiority.
There is no clear sign whether the Geneva talks will be able to produce progress toward meaningful arms reductions.
While that obviously was what Haig and Gromyko discussed today, no one offered immediate clues as to whether the two were able to chip away at the mutual hostility and distrust.