What does the suspension of New START mean? News. News headlines and events Last Minute Russia


Russian President Vladimir Putin has announced that Russia is suspending its participation in the new START nuclear arms reduction treaty with the United States. Putin made the announcement after accusing Western countries of directly facilitating attempts to strike Russian strategic air bases.

“Today I must announce that Russia is suspending its participation in the agreement on strategic offensive arms,” ​​Putin said.

What is New START?

The New START Agreement, signed in 2010 by then US President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, limits the number of strategic nuclear warheads that America and Russia can deploy.

The agreement, which went into effect in 2011 and has been extended for another five years after President Joe Biden took office in 2021, allows both U.S. and Russian auditors to verify that both parties are complying with the terms of the agreement.

Under the agreement, Moscow and Washington pledge not to deploy more than 1,550 nuclear warheads and deploy no more than 700 long-range missiles and bombs.

The agreement allows both countries to inspect strategic nuclear weapons depots up to 18 times a year to ensure that the parties do not violate the boundaries set in the agreement.

However, inspections under the agreement were halted in March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Negotiations on the resumption of inspections were to be held in Egypt last November. However, Russia postponed the negotiations. Neither side has set a new timetable for the start of negotiations.

Has Russia threatened to withdraw from New START before?

Earlier this month, Russia said it wanted to keep the treaty despite claims of a destructive US approach to arms control.

Russia and America own 90 percent of the world’s warheads. Both countries emphasized the need to avoid a war between nuclear powers at all costs.

But Russia’s invasion of Ukraine over the past 60 years has brought the two countries closer than ever to direct confrontation.

America accused Russia of violating the treaty by not allowing control over its territory. Moscow has warned that the West’s determination to “defeat” Russia will prevent it from being extended beyond 2026, when the deal expires.

What will happen now?

Last year, Russia noted that the danger of nuclear conflict is real and that this danger should not be underestimated, and nuclear confrontation should be avoided at all costs.

Both America and Russia have mechanisms in place to prevent the accidental use of their nuclear missiles. Years of tension during the Cold War brought both countries to the brink of nuclear conflict.

But Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has heightened fears of a nuclear confrontation. Reminding the world of the extent of Russia’s nuclear power, Putin said Russia was ready to use any means necessary to protect its “territorial integrity.”

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