Russia fears New START will follow INF Treaty into oblivion

Russia fears New START will follow INF Treaty into oblivion

Moscow doubts that the United States will be willing to extend the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty after withdrawing from the INF Treaty.

Following the collapse from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, another vital agreement is under serious threat, Russian Deputy Ambassador to the United Nations Dmitry Polyanskiy said at a Security Council briefing. The agreement in question is New START (the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty).

Another pillar of the arms control architecture, which helped create New START, was knocked down, Polyanskiy said according to RBK. He stressed that there was a missile defense treaty that had also been annulled just a while ago.

New START expires in February 2021, with Moscow and Washington negotiating on the terms of its extension from quite some time now. This treaty “is also at risk as the key players of the US Administration have repeatedly said both publicly and in private that they are not interested in preserving the START Treaty in its current form,” Polyanskiy said during his speech.

New START is a nuclear arms reduction treaty between the US and Russia signed on 8 April, 2010. The agreement ensures the reduction in the number of deployed nuclear warheads to 1,550 units for each country and a reduction in the number of intercontinental ballistic missile, ballistic missiles on submarines and heavy bombers to 700 units. It also provides for mutual inspections and data exchange.

New START expires in February 2021. In accordance with the document, it can be extended for another five years if both parties agree. Thus, Moscow and Washington need to decide on the future of New START until then. At the same time, both countries, repeatedly accused each other of violating its conditions, as was the case with the INF Treaty.

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