Michael Douglas backs State Dept in budget battle

WASHINGTON

The actor visited the State Department Thursday to discuss nuclear disarmament efforts and speak out against congressional efforts to slash billions of dollars in foreign assistance.

The 67-year-old told reporters, "People don't really take the time to understand just how important diplomacy is: It takes a long time. It's quiet. But it certainly is a lot cheaper than a war."

Douglas, who campaigns against atomic weapons for the U.N. and the anti-nuclear group Ploughshares, said that disarmament efforts have bogged down since a U.S.-Russian nuclear arms reduction treaty took force in February.

President Barack Obama also supports a global ban on nuclear testing, but that treaty lacks sufficient Senate support.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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