Thursday, April 8, 2010

US and Russia Sign New Nuclear Treaty

Via Times Online UK -

The United States and Russia signed a new treaty today aimed at shrinking stockpiles of nuclear warheads in a historic move that revives the push to halt the spread of atomic weapons, particularly to Iran.

President Obama, who attended the signing ceremony with Dmitry Medvedev, his Russian counterpart, in Prague, said that “ramped up” negotiations were expected in the coming days over Tehran’s nuclear ambitions and that they would result in another set of “strong, tough” sanctions against the Islamist regime.

“Today is an important milestone for nuclear security and non-proliferation, and for US-Russia relations,” the American leader said, speaking in a grand hall inside the Prague Castle where a year ago he gave a speech setting out his vision for a world without nuclear weapons.

The Russian President, standing at a podium next to Mr Obama, said of the treaty: “The result we have obtained is good.”


The agreement requires Moscow and Washington – holders of more than 90 per cent of the world's nuclear weapons – to slash their respective arsenals by about a third and reduce launchers by a half.

But the pact, which was already delayed because of difficulties in negotiations, could yet be undermined if either side fails to ratify the text or if Russia chooses to exercise a right to withdraw unilaterally over concerns about American plans for a missile-defence shield in Europe.

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