Russia, U.S. No Longer Targeting Each Other With Strategic Nukes
MOSCOW (AP) _ Russia and the United States are no longer aiming strategic nuclear missiles at each other’s territory, a Russian parliament leader announced today during a meeting with members of the U.S. Senate.
The retargeting occurred on the appointed day, added Sergei Yushenkov, who chairs the Defense Committee of the Duma, the powerful lower house of parliament.
The Russian-American agreement to stop aiming long-range nuclear missiles at one another’s countries was reached during President Clinton’s visit to Moscow in January. It was later joined by Great Britain.
Yushenkov said Great Britain and Russia also were no longer targeting each other.
Col. Gen. Igor Sergeyev, commander of the Russian Strategic Troops, told the Interfax News agency that target coordinates were removed from the missiles’ computer memories, so even in case of an accidental launch, the missiles will not move.
Yushenkov spoke at the opening session of a two-day meeting between a delegation from the Armed Services Committee of the U.S. Senate with Russian counterparts.
Sen. Sam Nunn, D-Ga., chairman of the Armed Services Committee and leader of the U.S. delegation, said his group plans to discuss parliamentary procedures, especially in relation to defense budget drafting and oversight.
The talk with Russian lawmakers will cover arms control, nuclear non- proliferation, regional issues including Bosnia, and organized crime.
The U.S. lawmakers also intend to discuss NATO’s Partnership for Peace program ″in the light of Russia’s recent proposals,″ Nunn added.
The Partnership for Peace program allows NATO to establish military and political ties with ex-Cold War foes. Russia wants a relationship with NATO that goes beyond the plan.