Russia Approves Extension of New START Treaty

Russia’s parliament has approved the extension of the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty for, known as New START which is set to expire on the 5th of February.

US President Joe Biden and President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia has discussed its extension and have agreed to exchange documents the day before.

The New START limits the strategic warheads and launchers of the two countries to 1,550 warheads and allows them to inspect one another’s stockpiles as a check and balance mechanism.

The extension would give the treaty five more years before it would be renewed again.

Putin said the extension was “a step in the right direction,” but also raised fears on new conflicts.

The extension does not require approval from lawmakers in the U.S. but it must be ratified first then signed into law in Russia.

“This is a good timeframe, which will allow us to work well — if the political will exists — to either further extend it or (agree) a new text of the agreement,” said Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov.

Talks to extend the treaty were not made during the Trump administration due to the US’ insistence that China should also become a party to the pact.

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