Russian, U.S. presidents discuss arms reduction pact over phone

Other News Materials 13 December 2009 02:33 (UTC +04:00)

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and his U.S. counterpart Barack Obama on Saturday discussed the drafting of a new nuclear weapons cuts treaty in a telephone conversation, the Kremlin said, Xinhua reported.
   The presidents exchanged views on the progress and prospects of the two countries' nuclear disarmament talks, the Kremlin said in a statement posted on its website.
    They "noted with satisfaction that the work of both delegations in Geneva is intensive and targeted, which allows (us) to speak of considerable progress in the talks," it said.
   Medvedev and Obama announced at their first meeting in April that the two countries would find a replacement for the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START-1), which expired on Dec. 5.
   Moscow and Washington have been in talks since July in a bid to work out a successor deal to the START-1. The Russian Foreign Ministry said on Friday the negotiations would continue in Geneva next week.
   The START-1, signed in 1991 between the Soviet Union and the United States, obliged both sides to reduce their nuclear warheads to 6,000 and delivery vehicles to 1,600.
   A follow-up agreement concluded in Moscow in 2002, known as the Moscow Treaty, envisioned cuts to 1,700-2,200 warheads by December 2012.
   The new treaty's outline agreed by the presidents at a July summit in Moscow included slashing nuclear arsenals to 1,500-1,675 operational warheads and delivery vehicles to 500-1,000.