MOSOW, January 26. /TASS/. Russia’s Federation Council upper parliament house is ready to vote for the ratification of the New START extension at its session on January 27, Konstantin Kosachev, chairman of the Council’s international committee, said on Tuesday.
"We will discuss this topic and I am sure we will vote for the extension of the New START Treaty at out next session tomorrow," he said.
He said he is convinced that both parliament houses "will waste no time to have this treaty extended via all necessary ratification procedures."
"I am absolutely confident that we in the Federation Council are totally ready for that," he stressed.
Besides, Kosachev welcomed the fact that Moscow’s cooperation with the new US administration begins with extending this landmark Russian-US treaty.
"It would be very good to begin our work with the new US administration of President Joseph Biden with a symbolic step of this kind, which would possibly open new doors and give additional opportunities to make progress regarding other problems that exist in our turbulent relations," said Konstantin Kosachev, who heads the international affairs committee of the Russian parliament’s upper chamber, the Federation Council.
Meanwhile, an informed parliamentary source told TASS on Tuesday the ratification of the agreement to extend the New START will be the number one item on Wednesday’s agenda of the Russian parliament’s lower chamber, the State Duma.
"This issue will most likely <…> be included into the agenda as the number one item," he said.
According to the source, all the necessary documents have been submitted to the State Duma. Its speaker Vyacheslav Volodin has already forwarded them to the lower chamber’s international affairs committee.
The Russian and US presidents, Vladimir Putin and Joseph Biden, expressed satisfaction following the exchange of notes on the extension of the New START Treaty, the Kremlin press service said on Tuesday after their telephone conversation. According to the Kremlin, "the sides will finalize, within days, procedures needed to ensure further functioning of this major international mechanism of reciprocal limitation of nuclear missile arsenals.".
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) was signed in 2010 and 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) upon the parties’ mutual consent.