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New US Administration Demonstrated Political Will in Extending New START Treaty, Kremlin Says

© Sputnik / Natalia Seliverstova / Go to the mediabankA view of the Russian Foreign Ministry and one of the Kremlin towers
A view of the Russian Foreign Ministry and one of the Kremlin towers - Sputnik International
Earlier this week, Russia and the US agreed to prolong the US-Russian Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) by five years. Russian President Vladimir Putin ratified the agreement on Friday.

The new US administration has demonstrated a political will in extending the US-Russian Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) by 5 years, Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said. 

He added that the move is down to President Putin's successful diplomacy.

"Probably, this should be considered as the success of all intelligent people. This issue worried everyone. And, of course, this is the success of our diplomacy and personally of the president, who argued that this was the cornerstone document, and, now, unfortunately, the only one left to us, which allows us control the strategic offensive potential of the two countries," Peskov said as aired by Rossiya 1 broadcaster.

According to Peskov, after New START's extension, Moscow can expect improved relations with Washington but the two nations are likely to remain at loggerheads over "sensitive issues."

New START has been in force since 2011 and was due to expire on 5 February. It is the only remaining legally binding agreement on nuclear arms control between the two countries that own the world's largest nuclear stockpiles. The deal is premised on the proposition that each side ultimately reduce its nuclear arsenal to total 700 missiles, 1,550 warheads and 800 launchers.

Russian President V. Putin congratulated members of the Russian government on the coming New Year - Sputnik International
President Putin Signs Document Extending New START for 5 Years

On Putin's Davos Speech

There was no confrontation or warning in the speech of Russian President Vladimir Putin at the virtual World Economic Forum in Davos, Peskov said on Sunday, adding it was an attempt to call for the common sense of politicians.

"This [was the same reaction as on] the Munich address of the president [back in 2007]. [It] was perceived with hostility and as a kind of speech filled with confrontation. In fact, no. And this time, too, [there was] no confrontation and no warning. This is just an attempt to call for the common sense of politicians," Peskov told the Rossiya 1 TV broadcaster.

According to the spokesman, the president formulated the entire range of problems that everyone will have to face very clearly and, probably, for the first time so coherently.

"This [was] the most thorough analysis. So far, no world leader has given a speech with such an analysis," Peskov said.

When asked whether Russia awaits reaction from its partners, the official said: "those who have ears will hear."

On Relations Between Russia and Europe

The potential of relations between Russia and the European Union has been thrown into the trash completely unreasonably and thoughtlessly, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Sunday, noting that today's challenges dictate the need to develop a dialogue.

"They just threw it into the trash completely thoughtlessly and unreasonably. This refers to the potential of relations between Russia and the European Union. And a huge number of challenges that we face, they dictate the need to develop this dialogue," Peskov told the Rossiya 1 TV channel.

"But every day, we hear those statements that we hear, and we do not like it," the official added.

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