The Russian federation will no longer notify the US about its missile tests and other nuclear activity, a senior Moscow diplomat said Wednesday
The move comes a month after President Vladimir Putin officially suspended the last remaining nuclear arms deal with the US.
Nuclear notifications between both countries had allowed Russia and the US to interpret each other’s nuclear moves for decades and differentiate test launches from missile attacks.
The termination of missile test warnings marks yet another attempt by Moscow to discourage the West from ramping up its support for Ukraine by pointing to Russia’s massive nuclear arsenal.
After Putin’s cancelation of the nuclear treaty between both countries, Russian’s foreign ministry said earlier that Moscow would continue to inform the US about its planned ballistic missile tests.
But on Wednesday, March 29, Russian deputy foreign minister Sergei Ryabkov indicated that they were going in a different direction.
Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said in remarks carried by Russian news agencies that Moscow has halted all information exchanges with Washington.
Asked if Moscow would halt missile test notices, Ryabkov said: ‘There will be no notifications at all.
‘All notifications, all kinds of notifications, all activities under the treaty will be suspended and will not be conducted regardless of what position the US may take,’ said Ryabkov according to local news agencies.
The news came as Russia began drills on Wednesday.
They involve Yars mobile missile launchers traversing three regions of Siberia and maneuvers to conceal the activity from foreign intelligence assets, according to the Russian defence ministry.
The Yars is an intercontinental ballistic missile with a nuclear tip that is the backbone of Moscow’s strategic forces.
The 2010 New START treaty, signed by former presidents Barack Obama and Dmitry Medvedev, limited the nations to up to 1,500 deployed nuclear warheads and 700 deployed missiles and bombers.
It also called for inspections to ensure the countries were in compliance.