03:09 GMT31 May 2020
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Russia's new Avangard hypersonic glide vehicle, which the Russian Strategic Missile Forces are set to receive by the end of the year, will not violate the provisions of the Russian-US New START arms reduction treaty, Viktor Poznikhir, an acting head of the Main Operational Directorate at the Russian General Staff, said.

    "The Avangard system is equipped with a ballistic missile, and all the procedures proscribed in the New START treaty will be applied to it", Poznikhir said in his address at the Russian upper house.

    Russia fully implemented its obligations under the deal in 2018, he stressed.

    The Avangard hypersonic nuclear-capable missile was introduced by Russian President Vladimir Putin on 1 March last year in an address to the Federal Assembly. The Avangard missile can fly at 20 times the speed of sound and it successfully hit its designated target 6,000 kilometres (over 3,700 miles) away during a test launch in December 2018, the Russian Defence Ministry stated.

    The New START, signed in 2010, is the only valid Russian-US arms reduction deal. The treaty expires in 2021 and the United States remains undecided on whether to extend it or not, while Russia has repeatedly stressed that it is ready for dialogue.


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    START treaty, hypersonic missiles, missile, Avangard, Russia
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