MOSCOW (AP) _ Russia and Cuba agreed Friday to create a joint venture to complete a nuclear reactor at the Juragua power station in Cuba, the Interfax news agency reported.

The United States opposes the station, viewing it as a safety risk to Florida and other states along the Gulf of Mexico.

Construction of two Soviet-designed, light-water reactors began in the early 1980s, but financial problems in both Cuba and the Soviet Union forced a halt to the project.

The plant is expected to cost up to $700 million to complete, earlier news reports said. The report did not say what the joint venture would do to raise the money.

Light-water reactors are considered safer than the graphite-cooled model that was in use in Chernobyl, Ukraine, site of the world's worst nuclear accident. But critics say the Soviet-designed light-water reactors still do not meet the safety standards of Western nations.