Russian FM: No Changes to New START Treaty

As Senate Scrambles, a Little Late for Revisions

In a statement which probably shouldn’t surprise anyone, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov pointed out that the New START treaty, the product of months of tense negotiations with the Obama Administration, was not open for quick alterations.

It cannot be opened up and become the subject of new negotiations,” insisted Lavrov, in the wake of a flurry of last minute negotiations in the lame duck US Senate for ratification, in which several Senators have called for revisions.

Debate on the treaty began just days ago, as a last ditch effort by the Obama Administration to avoid the massive debate that would happen in the new Senate. The effort has spawned growing opposition among Republicans, however.

And at this point it remains to be seen if the Senate will even vote on the ratification of the treaty, let alone pass it. Concerns seem to be centered around the fact that the treaty deliberately doesn’t address the US missile defense systems, which may well derail the treaty at some point in the future.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.