Russia and US in discussion to resume nuclear weapon reduction talks
Russia and US in discussion to resume nuclear weapon reduction talks as Moscow tones down nuke threats following talks with American officials
- Talks between two sides on nuclear weapons treaty stalled since Ukraine war
- But the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) talks may resume
- The talks could be held in the Middle East as Moscow no longer sees Switzerland, the traditional venue, as sufficiently neutral after it imposed sanctions on Russia
Russia and the US are discussing resuming their nuclear weapon reduction talks in the coming weeks.
Talks between the two sides on strategic nuclear weapons have been non-existent since Russia invaded Ukraine on February.
But the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) talks may resume in the next few weeks after Moscow toned down its nuclear threats following talks with American officials.
The talks could be held in the Middle East as Moscow no longer sees Switzerland, the traditional venue, as sufficiently neutral after it imposed sanctions on Russia over the Ukraine war, sources told Russian newspaper Kommersant.
In September, Russia said it was studying the possibility of a face-to-face meeting between Russian and US negotiators on the landmark nuclear arms treaty.
The treaty is one of the very few diplomatic agreements that remain in place between Moscow and Washington as relations hit rock-bottom over Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.
Russia and the US are discussing resuming their nuclear weapon reduction talks in the coming weeks. Pictured: The ‘Yars’ intercontinental ballistic missile launches during training in Russia on 26 October 2022
The New START treaty limits each country to no more than 1,550 deployed nuclear warheads and 700 deployed missiles and bombers, and envisages sweeping on-site inspections to verify compliance.
But in August, Russia announced a freeze on US inspections of its nuclear arsenals, claiming that Western sanctions have hampered similar tours of American facilities by Russian monitors.
It marked the first time the Kremlin halted US inspections since the New START treaty was signed by President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev in 2010.
Servicemen line up by Yars intercontinental ballistic missile systems of the 54th Guards Rocket Division of the 27th Guards Missile Army of the Russian Strategic Rocket Forces based in Teikovo, Russia, in February this year
Just days before the New START was due to expire in February 2021, Russia and the United States agreed to extend it for another five years until February 2026.
But in August, the Kremlin told the US that time was running out to negotiate a replacement for the treaty expired in 2026 without a replacement then global security would be weakened.
And now, Russia and the US are discussing resuming their talks on the nuclear treaty.
Washington is expected to talk about the resumption of on-site inspections, reports Kommersant.
After both Moscow and Washington withdrew from the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty in 2019, New START is the only remaining nuclear arms control deal between the two countries.
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