America and Russia have decided to work together on the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (SART) and France is all praises of this decision.
Signed between both countries in 1994, it expired in 2009. Having lasted over a decade, under the new American leadership, Washington has decided to extend it along with Moscow till 2026.
The French foreign ministry expressed its joy over this extension before it was meant to expire on February 05, 2021. This is being looked at as the first significant step into the continuance of a world of peace and prosperity, away from the development or use of nuclear weapons of mass destruction.
Commenting on the momentous development, the French Foreign Ministry did not mince its words when it said that “the New Start treaty is a pillar of the international arms control and disarmament architecture. It is vital to strategic stability and the last instrument still in effect aimed at limiting the capabilities of the United States and Russia, which still account for almost 90% of the world’s nuclear weapons stockpile.”
Further, the formal press note also said that France “reaffirms its attachment to ensuring that the extension of the New Sart Treaty must be swiftly followed by the redefinition of an ambitious, more comprehensive arms control and strategic stability agenda.”
However, a senior Russian diplomat has said that the US would need to keep its side of the bargain. Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov believes that Washington needs to watch out against, ‘destructive action’ or any kind of an attempt to ‘undermine Russia’s national security’ because something like this could lead Moscow to decide to ‘withdraw from the treaty.’
The treaty’s extension came as a surprise to everyone. A phone call exchange between Putin and Biden apparently, led to a change of hearts on the former’s side and an acceptance for an extension at the 11th hour.
Some political bigwigs believe that this extension is definitely good for humanity, as it buys time for the US, Russia, France, and some other like-minded nations to ready the 2010 treaty to match the added threat of cybersecurity hacks and AI power.
As long as the framework remains in place, some checks and balances will help maintain peaceful order in the world, and keep powers like China in check, that don’t seem to want any kind of control on stockpiles.