Washington has expressed its readiness to negotiate “a new arms control framework” with Russia to potentially replace the landmark New START, or Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty. US President Joe Biden made the remarks on Monday in a statement ahead of the tenth Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) review conference.
“Today, my Administration is ready to expeditiously negotiate a new arms control framework to replace New START when it expires in 2026. But negotiation requires a willing partner operating in good faith,” Biden said.
At the same time, the US president claimed that Moscow “has shattered peace in Europe” with its “brutal and unprovoked” military operation in Ukraine, which became “an attack on fundamental tenets of international order.”
“In this context, Russia should demonstrate that it is ready to resume work on nuclear arms control with the United States,” he stated.
Biden also called upon Beijing to take part in talks on nuclear disarmament.
“China also has a responsibility as an NPT nuclear weapons state and a member of the P5 to engage in talks that will reduce the risk of miscalculation and address destabilizing military dynamics. There is no benefit to any of our nations, or for the world, to resist substantive engagement on arms control and nuclear non-proliferation,” he said.
While Moscow has repeatedly called upon the US to unconditionally extend the deal for another five years, Washington floated various proposals on its amendment, namely calling upon China to participate.
The landmark New START is effectively the last major arms-control agreement left standing between Russia and the US. The agreement was salvaged after Biden’s inauguration in January 2021, shortly before the deal was set to expire.
Beijing has consistently rejected attempts by the former US administration to drag it into the framework and declined to join talks on the expansion of the US-Russia agreement. China has argued that its nuclear arsenal is too small compared to the stockpiles maintained by the US and Russia.