MOSCOW, October 25. /TASS/. The Federation Council, or upper house of Russia’s parliament, voted unanimously in a plenary session on Wednesday to revoke Moscow’s ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT).
The entire body of 156 senators approved the relevant bill with no dissenting votes.
According to the attached explanatory notes, the bill was designed to return Russia to a state of parity in arms control. Specifically, it repeals Article 1 of the federal law "On the Ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty," which contains a provision on the ratification of the treaty signed on behalf of Russia in New York on September 24, 1996. As well, the federal law "On the Ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty" has been retitled as "On the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty."
"The refusal on the part of the United States, China, Egypt, Israel, Iran, India, North Korea and Pakistan to comply with international procedures that are necessary for the treaty to come into force shows their unwillingness to commit themselves to the entire slew of obligations under the treaty as it forces the Russian Federation to take response measures aimed at restoring the balance as regards obligations under the treaty," the senators said.
The law will enable Russia to revoke the ratification instrument, while it "will remain a party to the treaty with all ensuing rights and obligations." Achieving the goal of preventing the proliferation of nuclear weapons is not deemed possible in the current international situation, given the destructive position of the United States and other countries, the senators insisted. They described the formal withdrawal of ratification as a reciprocal response that they said would put the parties on an equal footing regarding their obligations in this field.