SU-30SM, SU-35S, and SU-34 flying in formation - Sputnik International, 1920
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Talks With US on Space Weapons 'Completely Unproductive' - Moscow

CC0 / Pixabay / Space debris
Space debris - Sputnik International, 1920, 24.02.2024
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The recent contact between Russia and the US over claims Moscow alleged plans to deploy anti-satellite nuclear weapons in space turned out to be unproductive, Deputy Foreign Minister of the Russian Federation Sergey Ryabkov said.
The Wall Street Journal reported on Friday, citing US officials, that Washington had privately warned Moscow not to deploy a new nuclear-armed anti-satellite weapon which would allegedly violate the Outer Space Treaty and threaten US national security interests.
"There is no and cannot be any progress on this issue," Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov told reporters. "The reason is clear - the absurdity of US' accusations against us of allegedly intending to deploy some systems with weapons-grade nuclear components in space."
Testing the Burevestnik nuclear cruise missile - Sputnik International, 1920, 20.02.2024
Russia Always Against Deployment of Nuclear Weapons in Space - Putin
"As it has been continuously said recently, and as [Russian] President [Vladimir Putin] said, we have no such intentions," Ryabkov added. "The Americans pursue the goal of demonizing Russia by making accusations of this kind. Therefore, the contact on this issue is completely unproductive."
The deputy minister stressed that Russia had no intention of withdrawing from the 1967 Outer Space Treaty that bans the deployment of nuclear weapons or weapons of mass destruction in space.
"No, we do not consider [the possibility of withdrawal from the treaty]," Ryabkov said.
He also called it unacceptable that the US side had leaked details of the talks held between US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan and Russian Presidential Foreign Policy Advisor Yury Ushakov, which Moscow and Washington agreed to keep confidential.
Russia has repeatedly warned against an arms race in space, and advocated for its use for purely peaceful purposes. President Vladimir Putin reiterated on February 20 that Moscow has always opposed the deployment of nuclear weapons in space.
The Russian Foreign Ministry has noted that that the United States and its allies are taking steps to place weapons in space and use outer space for combat operations, not only for defensive purposes.
The West continues to regard space as a new arena of rivalry and conflicts between countries, in which Russia and China are identified as the main opponents, the ministry said.
Chief of Space Operations at US Space Force Gen. John Raymond, center, and Chief Master Sgt. Roger Towberman, right, hold the United States Space Force flag as it is presented in the Oval Office of the White House, Friday, May 15, 2020, in Washington.  Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett stands far left. - Sputnik International, 1920, 15.02.2024
US Militarizes Space While Using 'Russia Threat' as Smokescreen
The US created its first foreign space force under its command in the Indo-Pacific region in 2022, following the establishment of the space force in 2019 under pretext of threats from Russia and China. According to estimates, the United States has 4,723 satellites in orbit, while China has 647, Russia has 199, and the rest of the world has 1,527 combined.
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