01:16 GMT10 August 2020
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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - Assistant US Secretary of State for International Security and Nonproliferation (ISN) Christopher Ford has formally invited China to begin a strategic security dialogue on nuclear risk reduction and arms control, the State Department's ISN Bureau said in a statement on Friday.

    "Ford, performing duties of US for Arms Control and International Security, yesterday formally invited China to begin a strategic security dialogue on nuclear risk reduction & arms control and their future," the INS Bureau said via Twitter.

    The INS Bureau said it hopes to begin discussions as soon as possible and looks forward to China’s response.

    US President Donald Trump has repeatedly expressed interest in creating a new arms control agreement with Russia that would also include China.

    The New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) is the last remaining arms control treaty in force between Russia and the United States.

    Signed in 2010, the pact stipulates that the number of strategic nuclear missiles launchers must be cut by half and limits the number of deployed strategic nuclear warheads to 1,550.

    Russia has repeatedly stated its readiness to extend the New START treaty without any preconditions, but the United States is yet undecided about extending the agreement.

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    US State Department, talks, arms control, US, China
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