Russia: Chinese diplomat says trilateral arms control talks ‘unrealistic’

China won't join Russia and US on nuclear disarmament negotiations, but is prepared to reduce nuclear weapons within reasonable limits, Director General of the Department of Arms Control of the Chinese Foreign Ministry Fu Cong stated at the Moscow Nonproliferation Conference on Friday. According to Fu, nuclear disarmament needs to be done step-by-step. «The first step is for the US and Russia... Еще to continue to reduce their nuclear weapons, because their nuclear arsenals are so huge, so much bigger than the nuclear arsenals of other nuclear weapon states, so it is only natural that these two countries reduce their nuclear weapons first,» Fu said. He stressed that China would be «happy to join negotiations» once US and Russia reduce their nuke levels first. «But, it is unrealistic to expect China to join the so-called talk tripartite negotiations at this stage,» he said. The Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START), signed in 2010, remains the only treaty between Russia and the US on arms control. The agreement expires in February 2021, and so far Washington has not announced whether it intends to extend it. The US has expressed desire to develop a new trilateral nuclear disarmament agreement between Moscow, Beijing and Washington.

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