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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Washington still waits for new arms treaty with Russia

RIA Novosti

02:33 01/12/2009 MOSCOW, December 1 (RIA Novosti) - Ian Kelly, a spokesman for the United States Department of State, said the signing of a new arms treaty between Russia and the U.S. is impossible before the deadline of December 5.

"Well, I think - I mean, clearly it's going to be impossible to have a ratified treaty by December 5th," Kelly said at a daily press briefing.

Moscow and Washington are negotiating a replacement for the current Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START I), the basis for Russian-U.S. strategic nuclear disarmament, which expires on December 5.

An outline of the new pact was agreed during the Russian and U.S. presidents' bilateral summit in Moscow in July and includes cutting their countries' nuclear arsenals to 1,500-1,675 operational warheads and delivery vehicles to 500-1,000.

START I commits the parties to reducing their nuclear warheads to 6,000 and their delivery vehicles to 1,600 each. In 2002, a follow-up strategic arms reduction agreement was concluded in Moscow. The document, known as the Moscow Treaty, envisioned cuts to 1,700-2,200 warheads by December 2012.


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