Russia and the US need to continue dialogue on the START nuclear weapons treaty, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Tuesday, following Moscow's announcement that it will temporarily suspend inspections of its facilities under the treaty.
Speaking to reporters on a conference call, Peskov refused to comment directly on Russia’s decision and referred questions to the country's foreign ministry, which issued Monday's official statement.
Asked whether Moscow is ready to present to Washington further proposals on START, or is instead waiting for the US to make the first move, Peskov said: “Time will tell. We haven't received any specific proposals on this yet. But once again we repeat: dialogue is necessary.”
On Monday, Russia's Foreign Ministry said Russia "is compelled to resort to this measure due to Washington’s stubborn striving to achieve, without prior arrangement, the resetting of inspection activities on conditions that do not take into account existing realities and are creating unilateral advantages for the United States, and are de facto depriving the Russian Federation of the right to conduct inspections on American territory."
A US State Department spokesperson said Monday that "the principles of reciprocity, mutual predictability, and mutual stability will continue to guide the US approach to implementation of the New START Treaty, as they have since the treaty entered into force in 2011."
"We keep discussions between the parties concerning treaty implementation confidential," added the spokesperson.