Russia’s leader in charge of nuclear non-proliferation goals, Vladimir Yermakov, said on Saturday (30) that negotiations between his government and the United States are frozen. The information is from the Russian news agency Tass.
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According to him, contacts between the Americans and Russians will only resume after the war in Ukraine, which Russia calls a “special military operation”.
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Yermakov said the Russian government believes the US wants to finish projects to store short- and medium-range missiles in Europe and Asia. The Russian leader did not give any evidence that he could corroborate this thesis.
“The appearance of these weapons in these regions will worsen the situation and fuel an arms race,” he said.
US does not believe in nuclear threat
Russia tests new nuclear-capable intercontinental-range ballistic missile
The US does not believe there is a threat that Russia will use nuclear weapons, despite a recent escalation in Moscow’s rhetoric, a US defense official said on Friday.
Speaking on condition of anonymity, he said the Americans are monitoring Russian nuclear capabilities every day to the best of their ability and assess that there is no threat from the use of these weapons and no threat to the territory of NATO countries.
On Monday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said the West should not underestimate the heightened risks of nuclear conflict due to the war in Ukraine.
Russia said earlier this month that it plans to deploy newly tested Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missiles capable of mounting nuclear strikes against the United States by June.
Western concern about the risk of nuclear war increased after Russian President Vladimir Putin launched Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24 with a speech in which he pointedly referred to Moscow’s nuclear forces and warned that any attempt to getting in Russia’s way “will lead to consequences never seen in history.”
Earlier this month, CIA Director William Burns said the threat of Russia potentially using low-powered or tactical nuclear weapons in Ukraine could not be ignored, but that the CIA did not see much practical evidence bolstering that concern.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine left thousands dead or injured, reduced towns and cities to rubble and forced more than 5 million people to flee abroad.