The Russian Foreign Ministry issued a statement on the situation with the Treaty on Measures for the Further Reduction and Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms (START). Some crucial points:
- We categorically reject the US representatives’ allegations about Russia’s non-compliance with the provisions of the New START Treaty. Detailed official explanations on this matter have been brought to the notice of the US party via diplomatic channels. However, since Washington has deliberately disregarded the Russian position and has made this issue public, we consider it necessary to provide public explanations as well.
- We will not leave unanswered the United States’ hostile actions which put in question the applicability of several crucial provisions of New START. We would like to point out that the Treaty was signed in fundamentally different political realities and was part of a completely different process, which has been set out comprehensively in the preamble that is an integral part of the treaty. It says, in part, that the parties were “working to forge a new strategic relationship based on mutual trust, openness, predictability, and cooperation,” were “guided by the principle of indivisible security,” and were “endeavouring to reduce further the role and importance of nuclear weapons.” We regret to state that the US policy is diametrically opposed to all these goals.
- Before accusing the Russian Federation of non-compliance with the provisions of the New START Treaty, the United States should settle years-long problems with the US’s illegitimate exclusion from the counting rules of a substantial part of its strategic offensive arms, which Washington claimed to have converted or which it renamed so that they were no longer covered by the Treaty terms and definition. This has to do with over 100 strategic offensive systems, a matter that is extremely important in the context of the Treaty, which specified the balance of such armaments to within one weapon.
- Regarding the suspension of inspection activities under the treaty, we would like to note that it was the US activities that violated the standard inspection procedures. Washington adopted anti-Russia restrictions, which prevented the Russian Federation from holding unobstructed inspections in the territory of the United States and thereby created obvious unilateral advantages for the American party.
- We would like to point out again that Washington’s aggressive policy and the publicly declared goal of inflicting a “strategic defeat” on Russia in Ukraine, where increasing amounts of weapons are being sent together with instructors/mercenaries/military personnel from the United States and other NATO countries, as well as the US administration’s efforts to fuel confrontation in all spheres of bilateral interstate interaction, preclude the possibility of doing “business as usual.”
- The United States has actually launched a total hybrid war against Russia, which includes the risk of a direct military confrontation between two nuclear powers.
- Under these circumstances, Washington’s requests to resume, no matter what, the inspections of Russia’s strategic offensive facilities sound openly cynical, especially considering that the Kiev regime has tried to target them with the United States’ obvious military-technical, information and intelligence assistance.
- We most definitely emphasize that any positive signals or concessions on issues raised by the United States in the context of compliance with New START will be unjustified, untimely and inappropriate until Washington reviews its hostile policy towards Russia and abandons its line of building up threats to our national security.
- Russia reaffirms its unwavering commitment to New START as an important instrument for maintaining international security and stability. We urge the United States to accept that there is no alternative to building relations with Russia on the basis of the fundamental principles of equality and mutual respect for each other’s interest.
- Washington should draw appropriate practical conclusions from the obtaining situation.
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