21:42 GMT +322 October 2019
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    Russian Senator Wary of Arms Race Return Amid Trump's Comment on Nukes

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    The return to cold war and arms race will be inevitable if Washington seriously aims for the dominance in nuclear sphere, Leonid Slutsky, the chairman of the Russian lower house of parliament's international affairs committee, said Friday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — On Thursday, US President Donald Trump told Reuters news agency that the United States was going to be "at the top of the pack" in terms of nuclear capacities and would never "fall behind on nuclear power."

    "Trump's statements on the 'one-sided' character of the New START Treaty which allegedly hurts US interests are source for concern… If Washington really takes course for the superiority in the nuclear sphere, the arms race situation will inevitably worsen and the world will go back to the cold war," Slutsky told reporters.

    "It is necessary to maintain the core principles of nuclear parity. The dominance of one power is unacceptable because otherwise the whole system of the international security will be askew and all the efforts on the non-proliferation front of the last decades will be rendered unimportant," the lawmaker said.

    "I hope this [idea] will remain at the level of rhetoric and media reports and will not influence the real progress on this issue in Washington," Slutsky added.

    According to the lawmaker, it is necessary to hold talks on the fate of the New START Treaty as soon as possible.

    The pact was signed by the United States and Russia in 2010. The nations agreed to cut the number of deployed nuclear warheads to 1,550 and the number of deployed missiles and bombers to 700. The treaty is expected to last until 2021 and it may be extended for a period of no more than five years.

    Strategic Nuclear Arms Reduction Treaty (New START), Donald Trump, Leonid Slutsky, Russia
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