Russia optimistic resolving dispute with US

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MOSCOW

Moscow expects to resolve disagreements with Washington over New START (Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty), Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said, addressing the State Duma (the lower house of parliament) on Thursday. We expect that we will eventually succeed in resolving issues related to the Treaty’s implementation and agree with the US to extend it, he said.

The senior diplomat pointed out that Moscow is interested in extending New START as much as the United States is interested in it. If the US refuse to do it, it won’t be a tragedy for us. We have ensured the country’s defense capabilities for the medium term, Ryabkov pointed out.

New START, which came into force in 2011, limits Russia and the US to no more than 700 deployed intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM), submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBM) and strategic bombers, no more than 1,550 deployed warheads and 800 deployed and non-deployed launchers. The Treaty is set to remain in effect for ten years (until 2021) unless a new document is signed to replace it. The document can also be extended for no more than five years (that is, until 2026) by mutual agreement of the parties. — VoM

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