Soviet President Konstantin Chernenko has blamed the Reagan administration for "the further heightening of international tension" and has accused the United States of wanting to "deceive world opinion" about its willingness to negotiate arms control agreements while building up its own arsenal.
Chernenko's remarks came in the form of an interview distributed today by the Soviet news agency Tass and scheduled to be published Sunday in the Communist Party daily Pravda. The interview followed unofficial reports during the past 10 days that Chernenko has been hospitalized with heart trouble. Tass said the answers had been delivered in writing and, while the interview was reported on state television, no film footage or pictures of Chernenko were shown.
Chernenko said the Soviet Union remained willing to hold talks with the United States on a wide range of issues, including the limitation of strategic nuclear weapons. But he said Washington had made such a dialogue impossible by setting unacceptable conditions for talks in virtually every field.
The Soviet leader dismissed the possibility of Soviet participation in talks on space weapons. He repeated the Soviet position that "the American approach" to the talks -- rejection of a Soviet proposal that they begin with a mutual moratorium on space weapons -- meant that they would make "no sense."
"As a matter of fact, the U.S. administration does not want to resolve the problem of preventing the militarization of outer space but only wants to deceive world opinion while proceeding with plans for new space weapons," Chernenko said.
A State Department spokesman responded by saying the United States was willing to return to nuclear disarmament talks, which the Soviet Union broke off, and to take part in space weapons talks, Reuter reported. "The United States . . . is seeking and will continue to seek more stable and constructive relations with the Soviet Union through negotiations," the spokesman said.
The interview contained no new substantive points, raising the possibility that it was intended primarily to reassure the public that Chernenko is actively on the job as leader of the Soviet Union despite his absence from public view for seven weeks.
Whether a written interview in the Communist Party daily can serve that purpose is questionable, since the Soviets used a similar technique Jan. 24 when they published an interview in Pravda attributed to then-president Yuri Andropov. Andropov, who had not been seen for several months, died less than three weeks later, and it now seems probable that he was incapacitated at the time of the alleged interview.
The Chernenko interview also could be read as a response to the Republican platform and recent public statements by President Reagan.
In the report of the interview, Chernenko declared that the Republicans' foreign policy priorities leave "a depressing impression."
"They in Washington are flaunting with open cynicism their great-power ambitions, exaggerated notions about America's role and place in the modern world," Chernenko said. "They claim the part of being the strongest, or ruling the destinies of peoples and dictating their will to all, and everywhere. In brief, they are now talking about a 'crusade' not only against socialism but actually against the entire world."
Chernenko accused the United States of sabotaging talks on space weapons. He reiterated the Soviet position that Moscow is willing to participate if its conditions are met, and said that an agreement on space weapons could "not only prevent the arms race in outer space but, what is no less important, could facilitate the solution of questions of limiting and reducing other strategic armaments."
The Soviets in June proposed a meeting to negotiate an agreement on weapons in outer space. The Reagan administration initially accepted the proposal, but the dialogue was soon stymied by questions about the scope of the negotiations and the Soviets' demands for a moratorium on testing.
The Soviets have already tested a low-altitude antisatellite weapons system and the United States is planning a test of a similar, more sophisticated system in November.
After diplomatic maneuvering by both sides, Moscow rejected the U.S. position. Chernenko enlarged on the Soviet stand today.
"The problem of space armaments cannot be resolved by half or by one quarter," he said. "It is impossible, for instance, to ban one type of antisatellite weapons and allow another, or ban only antisatellite weapons and give the green light, so to speak, to other types of space weaponry."