Geneva/Moscow: The consistent imposition of US sanctions over Russia is threatening the US-Russia nuclear treaty and signals towards a threat, warned a Russian minister. The nuclear weapons pact ‘New START’ (New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty), signed between the US and Russia would cease to exist in the year 2021. As per the deal, both nations have agreed upon to reduce their nuclear arsenal up to 50 per cent.
‘Western governments are Russia’s adversaries, not friends. The US system has become unsteady and may malfunction at any time. We could lose several elements on arms control infrastructure’, claimed Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Rybakov. Targeting the US-imposed sanctions, he also warned of it having serious implications over the nuclear pact.
The US-imposed sanctions have created a hindrance to the negotiations of the nuclear treaty. If its progress is arrested, the entire process may be reversed and may lead to severe consequences. The future of New START doesn’t look bright. The US isn’t taking an initiative for the treaty’, claimed the Russian Deputy Foreign Minister.
Only last week the US had issued a stern warning to Russia saying, ‘If Russia didn’t stop developing new weapons which is in violation of the international deal, the 1987 Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty (or INF), the US would have to take harsh steps to follow measures which are not in line with the treaty as well’.
The US has alleged that Russia has developed the ‘9M729’ which is an intermediate-range missile. The Cold War-era pact inked between the two nations, bans an entire class of weapons. Moreover, ballistic or cruise missiles with a range of 300 to 3,400 miles (roughly 500-5,500 kilometers) are neither permissible to be developed or tested. Even so, Russia has contravened the treaty through the 9M729, accused the US.