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Thursday, February 11, 2016

Russian Dep For Min Ryabkov: We Will Not At This Time Be Returning To Nuclear Arms Reduction Talks With U.S.

Russian Dep For Min Sergey Ryabkov: We Will Not At This Time Be Returning To Nuclear Arms Reduction Talks With U.S. Under 'New START' Treaty. (Memri).

To mark the fifth anniversary of the New START (Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty), which was signed in April 2010 and came into force on February 5, 2011, U.S. National Security Advisor Susan Rice stated: "We look forward to full implementation of the Treaty and continue to call on Russia to answer the President's invitation five years ago to begin talks on further reductions to our nuclear arsenals."[1]

Ryabkov to the effect that Russia will not at this time be returning to nuclear arms reduction talks with the U.S.   

In an interview, Ryabkov explained Russia's rejection of Security Advisor Rice's call, outlining two reasons: First, the U.S. is stepping up its military capability by developing its anti-missile defense system and its Prompt Global Strike (PGS) precision conventional weapons program, and second, the U.S. is currently undermining the Russian defense industry through its sanctions against Russia.

Following are excerpts from statements by Ryabkov, from interviews with the TASS[2] and Russia Today[3] news agencies and from reports in the Russian daily Kommersant[4] on this issue.

In a February 6, 2016 interview, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Ryabkov told Russia Today: "The Russian side's position regarding the possibility of further negotiations on the [New] START, and regarding nuclear arms reduction in general, hasn't changed. We have reached the point where further bilateral Russian-American negotiations in this field are not possible."

He added that Russia would only consider resuming negotiations if the above mentioned circumstances changed, and if the parties to the talks come to the dialogue as "equal sovereign states."

The same day, commentator Michael Belyaev wrote in Kommersant that the main reason for this Russian position is that "in light of the current U.S. policy towards Russia, the U.S. proposals are [an attempt] to impose a game by 'American rules' – There is no way that such a proposal can be seriously considered."

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