Russian government spokesman Dmitry Peskov today dismissed claims from President Obama that the nuclear deals reached during his time in office were everything Russia would’ve been willing to reach, saying Russia had always favored further nuclear disarmament so long as it was proportional with America’s own nuclear arsenal.
Speculation about possible new nuclear arms deals were raised over the weekend, when President-elect Donald Trump suggested that he would lift American sanctions against Russia as part of a broader deal which would include substantial nuclear arms reduction.
Trump made the suggestion in an interview, and didn’t offer any specifics on this negotiation. It was panned yesterday by Obama, however, who insisted the US shouldn’t link the sanctions to nuclear deals, and that if there were any more good nuclear arms deals to be had with Russia, he’d have made them.
There were no signs of US-Russia nuclear arms discussions in recent years at all, however, with early efforts reached at great difficulty, given the Obama Administration’s unwillingness to discuss their missile defense systems along the Russian frontier in Europe. The cuts also faced stiff resistance from US Congressional hawks.
Any substantial new deals are likely to rest heavily on the Russian notion of proportionality, as Russia views the NATO expansion into former Warsaw Pact nations as having dramatically changed the strategic situation in Europe, complicating efforts to retain a suitable deterrent.
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