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MOSCOW, September 23. /TASS/. The United States is in fact the sole state that blocks progress on the issue of not being the first to deploy weapons in space, the deputy director of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s non-proliferation and weapons control department, Vladimir Yermakov, told a news conference on Friday.
As the diplomat recalled, in 2014 Russia presented to the UN General Assembly for consideration a draft resolution on not being the first to deploy weapons in space.
"It contains a simple proposal: a call for a dialog on this issue and further progress towards legally binding agreements," Yermakov said. "The draft was adopted by an overwhelming majority vote. In 2015 there appeared 40 co-authors of that resolution."
"This year we will push ahead with promoting our draft resolution on not being the first to deploy weapons in space in the first committee of the UN General Assembly session," Yermakov said. "But here the question arises who blocks this progress."
"It is our US partners who do that," he said. "For the time being the United States is the sole country that upsets movement in this direction."
Yermakov said that four countries - the United States, Israel, Georgia and Ukraine - voted against that resolution.
"The US forced its NATO partners and other allies to abstain when the resolution was put to the vote," he recalled, adding that Russia would be defending its stance.
According to Yermakov, Moscow firmly opposes the deployment of any weapons in space, moreover any arms race.
"Russia’s foreign policy has a top priority to ensure security in space," Yermakov said. "As space pioneers, we have undertaken special additional commitments on security of space activities," he noted.
"Since the Soviet times, we have stood up for international agreements so as to close down any possibility of placement of any weapons in space, moreover to begin an arms race there," he said.
A draft statement in support of the multilateral initiative against the first deployment of weapons in outer space was approved by the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) member states at a working meeting on the sidelines of the 71st session of the UN General Assembly, Russia’s Foreign Ministry said on Friday.
The customary meeting of the foreign ministers of the CSTO member states was held in New York on Thursday. The participants discussed the priority issues on the agenda at the 71st session of the UN General Assembly and exchanged views on the directions of the development of cooperation between the CSTO and the UN, including peacekeeping activities.
"The allied states agreed on their joint actions at the UN level in the sphere of security, the war on terror, combating the glorification of Nazism and neo-Nazism, countering attempts to rewrite the outcome of the World War II, and so forth," a source in the Russian foreign ministry noted.
CSTO Secretary General Nikolay Bordyuzha informed the meeting’s participants about preparations for the next session of the CSTO Council of Collective Security, scheduled to be held on October 14 in Armenia’s capital of Yerevan.
"The meeting marks an important step in efforts to bolster foreign policy coordination between the CSTO member states," the Russian Foreign Ministry stated.