Putin: Russia is ready to abandon the START nuclear treaty with US

File Reuters

UNITED STATES (VOP TODAY NEWS) — Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday that Russia was ready to abandon its strategic arms limitation treaty with the United States, known as the “New START” if there was no interest in renewing it.

“If no one feels a desire to extend the agreement – the new START – well, we will not do that,” Putin said at the St. Petersburg economic forum, referring to the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START), which determines the number of nuclear warheads in both countries.

“We have said hundreds of times that we are ready (to extend it),” he said, adding that Washington “is not holding any talks” with Moscow in particular. “There is no formal process of talks, and in 2021, everything will end,” he said.

US President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev signed the 2010 agreement in Prague.

START, along with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (INF), is a cornerstone for the reduction of the weapons of major powers.

Washington and Moscow put the second agreement in the air earlier this year amid accusations.

Putin warned that the possible repercussions if the “new START” was abandoned would be huge, and the alternative would be fueling a nuclear arms race.

“There will be no tools to limit the arms race, such as the deployment of space weapons,” he said. “This means that nuclear weapons will be a priority over all of us all the time,” he said.

At the same time, Putin pointed out that Russia would not fear putting the treaty on the shelf because it is developing a new generation of weapons that will “guarantee the security of Russia” in the long term.

“We have surpassed our rivals in the superior arms industry,” Putin said.


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