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Russia may positively respond to proposal on renewing INF Treaty, says diplomat

February 07, 13:51 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said all talks, especially multilateral, on such challenging issues cannot be held without discussing the framework and parameters of a future deal

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MOSCOW, February 7. /TASS/. Russia may positively respond to the United States’ proposal on signing a new Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov told reporters on Thursday.

"We have certainly seen the US president’s statement on the possibility of concluding a new treaty, which could be signed in a beautiful room, and the document should involve other countries as participants," Ryabkov said.

Russia is looking forward to receiving this detailed proposal for the agenda of these talks, he noted.

According to the senior diplomat, all talks, especially multilateral, on such challenging issues cannot be held without discussing the framework and parameters of a future deal. Before agreeing on details, the sides should draw up a framework of the treaty, he said.

"As soon as our US colleagues are ready to hand over to us something like this in practical terms, we will certainly consider this with interest and I hope in a positive way," Ryabkov said. "So far, we haven’t seen anything except for a proposal to sign such a treaty in a beautiful room. Of course, we welcome this proposal."

Ryabkov stressed that it’s important to wait for Washington’s clarification on this issue. "We have said that we are ready for dialogue and we are not abandoning it, but we won’t initiate anything ourselves," he said. "If the US is really interested in launching this or that process, they should specify their proposal. This is an irrevocable position outlined by the Russian president, and we will stick to it."

US President Donald Trump earlier said the United States was ready to negotiate a different agreement to replace the INF Treaty, adding other parties, including China.

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