US proposal on START appreciated by Moscow

RUSSIA / FSU POLITICS - In Brief 22 Jan 2021 by Alex Teddy

On January 20 the American suggestion to prolong the present nuclear arms control treaty was welcomed by Russia. START runs out on February 5. This is an unusual example of the two countries seeing eye to eye. The US suggested that the treaty be extended by 5 years, which Russia previously suggested. NATO echoed these sentiments.Russia asked for more particulars on the US suggestion. The treaty limits both signatories to 1550 warheads apiece, as well as 800 missile launchers, and limitations on the number of bombers. That is a reduction on the previous limits. Further cuts in nuclear arsenals might be proposed.Biden has suggested pressing the reset button on relations with Russia as Obama did. Nor does Biden want bad relations, either. His designated National Security Adviser, Jake Sullivan, is a hawk on Russia. But for once US and Russian interests appear to coincide. A ruinously expensive arms race is disadvantageous to both sides, especially in the current economic climate.

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