Russia ready for dialogue with U.S. on prolonging New START

Russia ready for dialogue with U.S. on prolonging New START

Russia is ready for talks with the United States on the prospects of prolonging the New START (Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty) agreement, but Washington's position is not yet clear, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.

The Kremlin spokesman noted that work in this area is "impossible without determining the U.S. position." At the same time, he pointed out that there is not yet a clear understanding of whether Washington is ready to discuss the extension of the New START treaty. “Moscow is waiting for Washington to clarify its position,” TASS cited the Russian president's secretary as saying.

Peskov recalled that Russian President Vladimir Putin said more than once that Moscow considers it necessary to extend the treaty, which "is virtually the only disarmament document left" between Russia and the United States. He also said that this topic was touched upon in a telephone conversation between Putin and U.S. President Donald Trump on May 3.

The deputy head of the Council of the Russian Diplomats Association, Andrey Baklanov, speaking to Vestnik Kavkaza, noted that Russia should not rush to negotiate the extension of the START Treaty. “Personally, I see a trick in all the disarmament proposals being voiced by the U.S. today. In the interpretation of the United States, there is a clear desire to put Russia's position in line with the position of the People’s Republic of China. Everything being said by Washington shows that they are not ready for honest and balanced negotiations on the New START," he stressed.

"They are well aware that Russia provides very serious nuclear deterrence, so their efforts will be directed to us reducing the level of defense readiness. The same efforts are also directed towards missile defense. Apparently, the American specialists came to the conclusion that they cannot create a reliable shield against Russian missiles now, due to which the search for other areas of military-political confrontation has begun. It’s very important that we don’t buy into the American argument," Andrei Baklanov called on.

"Another problem is that Washington is not going to adhere to its obligations if circumstances change. Therefore, I oppose negotiations with the Trump administration. Now we need negotiations aimed at easing a degree of opposition and returning to a balanced protection system against unauthorized attack or technology failures" the diplomat concluded.

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