MOSCOW, June 9. /TASS/. Russia doesn’t see that China is ready for trilateral arms control talks with the United States and doesn’t think this position will be changed, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said on Tuesday.
"We don’t see any Chinese readiness to do so and so we do not anticipate that this approach would change anytime soon," he said during a videoconference of the New York Council on Foreign Relations. "And we do not intent to use whatever tools in our capacity to change this because it a sovereign choice of any country."
According to the Russian senior diplomat, the United States’ intention to involve China to bilateral arms control talks only complicates dialogue on that matter.
He said that the extension of the New START Treaty will give time to work out measures of control over new types of weapons, including hypersonic arms.
"In absence of any clear understanding, or more importantly, common understanding of what to do here, the easiest way to buy time would be to extend the existing treaty as ratified in 2010 in both capitals and then use the five years of this treaty extension to continue exchanges and find probably a better way to address all sorts of issues including those associated with new military technologies. We have many concerns of what is going on the in the American buildup. These are American missile defenses becoming more and more global, these are perspectives for the US weapons in outer space, these are hypersonic weapons <…> and many more," he said. "All these issues require a very different approach to what has been before rather than arithmetic counting of warheads and delivery means."
Number of participants in arms control treaties unlikely to change
It is hardly possible that more participants join arms control agreements any time soon, Ryabkov said.
"We would welcome multilateralization of an arms control, but we do not see any particular perspective for this to happen any time soon," Ryabkov said during a videoconference of the New York Council on Foreign Relations.
In his words, Russia shows utmost respect to every country’s national stance on this issue, including China.
"And we do not believe that China would agree to something like this," he added.
The Russian diplomat reiterated that Russia and the United States should extend the New START treaty on a bilateral basis first. In his opinion, the scenario under which Washington’s unilateral actions lead to complete demolition of the arms control framework must be avoided.
The Treaty between the United States of America and the Russian Federation on Measures for the Further Reduction and Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms (the New START Treaty) entered into force on February 5, 2011. The document stipulates that seven years after its entry into effect each party should have no more than a total of 700 deployed intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM), submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBM) and strategic bombers, as well as no more than 1,550 warheads on deployed ICBMs, deployed SLBMs and strategic bombers, and a total of 800 deployed and non-deployed ICBM launchers, SLBM launchers and strategic bombers.
The New START Treaty will remain in force for 10 years, until 2021, unless it is replaced before that date by a subsequent agreement on the reduction and limitation of strategic offensive arms. It can also be extended for no longer than 5 years (that is, until 2026) by the parties’ mutual consent.
Moscow has repeatedly called on Washington not to delay prolongation of the treaty it describes as the gold standards in the area of disarmament.