The US accuses Russia of violating the nuclear arms control treaty by not allowing inspections to take place. Photos/Illustrations
WASHINGTON – Russia violated a key nuclear arms control treaty with United States of America (USA) and continues to refuse to allow inspections of its nuclear facilities. This was announced by a spokesperson for the US State Department.
“Russia is not complying with its obligations below New START Treaty to facilitate inspection activities in its territory. Russia’s refusal to facilitate inspection activities prevents the United States from exercising important rights under the treaty and threatens continued US-Russian nuclear weapons control,” a State Department spokeswoman said in a statement.
“Russia also failed to comply with the New START Treaty’s obligations to convene a Bilateral Consultative Commission session in accordance with the agreement’s mandated timeline,” the spokesperson added as quoted by CNN, Wednesday (1/2/2023).
Under the New START treaty – the only remaining treaty governing the world’s two largest nuclear arsenals – Washington and Moscow are allowed to carry out inspections of each other’s weapons sites. But due to the Covid-19 pandemic, inspections have been stopped since 2020.
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The Bilateral Consultative Commission session on the agreement was scheduled to meet in Egypt at the end of last November but was abruptly cancelled. The US blamed Russia for the delay, with a State Department spokesman saying the decision was made “unilaterally” by Russia.
The treaty limits the number of intercontinental-range nuclear weapons that the US and Russia can possess. That agreement was last extended in early 2021 for five years, meaning the two sides must start negotiating another arms control agreement soon.
The US State Department said Russia could return to full compliance if it allowed inspection activities on its territory, as it had for years under the New START Treaty and also scheduled a commission session.
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On Monday, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said the last remaining elements of a bilateral nuclear arms control agreement with the United States could expire in three years without replacement.
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