MOSCOW, January 27. /TASS/. Any destructive actions by the US in the sphere of arms control or attempts to undermine Russia’s national security may lead to Moscow leaving the Treaty on Measures for the Further Reduction and Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms (New START), Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov told journalists on Wednesday.
"We have the situation where in case of any possible destructive action on the American side in this sphere and an attempt to undermine our security, evaluated as having such far-reaching consequences as causing us to leave the treaty, the procedure allows the appropriate action. Yet I will reiterate: we do not want this," the senior diplomat said.
"All stipulations, all statements, all elements [on Russia’s right to leave the treaty] of the 2011 ratification package remain effective. I don’t want to discuss negative scenarios right now," he pointed out.
On January 26, Moscow and Washington exchanged diplomatic notes to reach an agreement on extending the New START treaty. Russian President Vladimir Putin and his American counterpart Joe Biden expressed satisfaction with this fact in a phone conversation on Tuesday. As the Kremlin press service reported after the conversation of the two leaders, the sides will soon finalize all the necessary procedures ensuring that this treaty continues to function. On Tuesday night, Putin submitted to the State Duma (lower house) the agreement to extend the New START treaty for five years without pre-conditions for ratification. The document will be reviewed by both chambers of the parliament as early as Wednesday.