U.S. extends nuclear arms control treaty with Russia
Updated 22:47, 03-Feb-2021

The United States has extended the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) with Russia for five years starting Wednesday, the U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement.

"President Biden pledged to keep the American people safe from nuclear threats by restoring U.S. leadership on arms control and nonproliferation," the statement read. "Today, the United States took the first step toward making good on that pledge when it extended the New START Treaty with the Russian Federation for five years."

"Extending the New START Treaty ensures we have verifiable limits on Russian ICBMs, SLBMs, and heavy bombers until February 5, 2026," the statement added.

President Joe Biden's administration said last month it would seek the extension. The arms control treaty, which is due to expire on February 5, limits the United States and Russia to deploying no more than 1,550 strategic nuclear warheads each.

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed off last Friday legislation extending the accord. 

(With input from agencies)

(Cover: A ground-based intercontinental ballistic missile is launched from the Plesetsk facility during a drill in northwestern Russia, December 9, 2020. /AP)

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