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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

U.S.-Russia arms reduction talks to resume in January - Lavrov

RIA Novosti


MOSCOW, January 12 (RIA Novosti) - Moscow and Washington could resume talks on a new U.S.-Russian strategic arms reduction treaty by the end of January, the Russian foreign minister said on Tuesday.

The new document to replace the START 1 treaty, which expired on December 5, has not been signed yet because the sides have failed to agree on verification and control arrangements to be included in the document.

"We are expecting the talks to resume some time in the second half of January," Sergei Lavrov told reporters at a press conference in Moscow.

Lavrov insisted that an important document such as a new arms reduction treaty demands thorough development and revision, including by legal and linguistics experts, before it is submitted for signing.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and his U.S. counterpart Barack Obama pledged at their first meeting in April to replace the START I treaty as part of broader efforts to "reset" bilateral ties strained in recent years.

The new treaty's outline agreed by the presidents included cutting nuclear arsenals to 1,500-1,675 operational warheads and delivery vehicles to 500-1,000.

American and Russian officials have been holding intense talks since July last year with the initial aim of signing a new accord before the expiration of the START I treaty.

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