MOSCOW, July 2 (Itar-Tass) - Not a single country will be able to attack Russia’s strategic nuclear forces with impunity, Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov said after talks between the Russian and Tanzanian defense ministers on Tuesday.
“No country will be able to cause harm to Russia’s defenses, let alone eliminate 90 percent of our nuclear forces in an instant. Russia’s nuclear force has been and will remain a safeguard of national security,” Antonov told the media, when asked if the United States were capable of destroying up to 80-90 percent of Russia’s strategic nuclear potential in the first hours of confrontation.
Antonov said that Russia’s military-political leadership was doing its utmost to prevent the national nuclear potential from losing strength.
“Within the framework of the modernization of nuclear forces priority is attacked to raising the effectiveness and reliability of our strategic nuclear forces, which are the basis of our country’s security. The necessary amounts of financing have been reserved under the state program for armaments extending till 2020,” said Antonov, who is the chief Russian negotiator at the talks on drafting a new START treaty.
“When the current START treaty was in the drafting phase, the Russian experts’ key task was to come to terms with the US side on conditions that would ensure Russia’s security in case the events follow an unfavorable scenario. As a result the parity of national strategic nuclear forces was established.
The current treaty enables Russia to retain the nuclear triad, including the ground, sea-based and air-based component.
“It maintains the high viability and protection of strategic offensive arms and flexibility in making decisions in case of the need for using them,” Antonov said.
Earlier in the day he had participated in negotiations between Russian Defense Minister, General of the Army Sergei Shoigu and Tanzania’s Defense Minister Shamsi Vuai Nahodha.