20 Oct 2017 15:14

Russia-U.S. substantive dialogue on START, INF Treaty is needed - Ryabkov

MOSCOW. Oct 20 (Interfax) - Russia and the United States need to start substantive dialogue regarding the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) and the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF Treaty), but Moscow is unaware of the U.S. administration's stance on offensive arms reduction, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said.

"We have no idea as to what the administration of [U.S. President Donald] Trump thinks about the future of this treaty, but we believe that now is the time to discuss not only strategic stability but also the START and the INF Treaty in a more focused and substantive manner," Ryabkov told reporters on Friday.

"As far as strategic stability is concerned, we are moving to a certain extent in a number of aspects towards what I would call an acceptable level of mutual understanding as to how these or those issues can be resolved," he said.

"But we are wasting time, too. We have set a date, February 5, 2018, when Russia and the U.S. must certify compliance with certain conditions of this treaty. But we also need to think about tomorrow, because the current treaty expires in 2021," Ryabkov said.