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Putin Suspends Nuclear-Arms Treaty Between Russia, U.S.

Tuesday, 21 February, 2023, 23:30
Putin Suspends Nuclear-Arms Treaty Between Russia, U.S.

Russian President Vladimir Putin declared Tuesday that Moscow was suspending its participation in the New START treaty — the last remaining nuclear arms control pact with the United States — sharply upping the ante amid tensions with Washington over the fighting in Ukraine.

Speaking in his state-of-the-nation address, Putin also said that Russia should stand ready to resume nuclear weapons tests if the U.S. does so, a move that would end a global ban on nuclear weapons tests in place since the end of the Cold War.

Explaining his decision to suspend Russia’s obligations under the 2010 New START treaty, Putin accused the U.S. and its NATO allies of openly declaring the goal of Russia’s defeat in Ukraine.

“They want to inflict a ‘strategic defeat’ on us and try to get to our nuclear facilities at the same time,” he said, declaring his decision to suspend Russia’s participation in the treaty.

Putin emphasized, however, that Russia was not withdrawing from the pact altogether. Hours after his address, the Russian Foreign Ministry said the country would respect the caps on nuclear weapons set under the treaty.
Russia also will continue to exchange information about test launches of ballistic missiles per earlier agreements with the United States, the ministry said.