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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 26, 2010
6:32 PM

CONTACT: Nuclear Age Peace Foundation

Rick Wayman
Director of Programs
(805) 965-3443

US-Russia Nuclear Reduction Agreement an “Important Step Forward”

WASHINGTON - March 26 - The Nuclear Age Peace Foundation today welcomed the announcement of a new treaty to replace the 1991 Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) between the United States and Russia.

While exact details of the new agreement are not yet known, it is reassuring to see that the two countries are moving ahead with nuclear reductions after years of no progress.

However, two major obstacles remain to full cooperation between the two countries on nuclear disarmament. First, the two sides still strongly disagree on the US missile defense plans, which would put missiles and radar installations close to the Russian border. It appears that the two countries have been able to work around the issue in this new treaty, but resolution of this issue is essential to making further progress toward nuclear weapon-free world.

Second, the US Senate must ratify the new treaty with at least 67 votes. The Nuclear Age Peace Foundation urges the Senate to ratify this new treaty without conditions that would undermine the disarmament progress that has been made. Some senators want to invest billions of dollars in new nuclear weapons production facilities in exchange for a "Yes" vote on ratification.

David Krieger, President of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, said, "This new treaty is an important step toward President Obama's stated goal of a world free of nuclear weapons. After this agreement is fully implemented, however, there will still be sufficient nuclear weapons to destroy civilization and most life on the planet. We will still be living with the existential threat posed by nuclear weapons, which requires us now to put the issue of a Nuclear Weapons Convention at the forefront of the debate."

In a briefing booklet just published by the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation for the 2010 Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference, the Foundation calls on all signatory states of the NPT to commence "negotiations in good faith on a Nuclear Weapons Convention for the phased, verifiable, irreversible and transparent elimination of nuclear weapons, and complete these negotiations by the year 2015."

Dr. Krieger continued, "We believe that the time is right for the US and Russia to play a leadership role in bringing the other countries of the world into negotiations for a Nuclear Weapons Convention."

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Notes:

1. To download a copy of the Foundation's new briefing booklet "Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament: Shifting the Mindset," please visit www.wagingpeace.org/goto/nptbooklet

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The Nuclear Age Peace Foundation initiates and supports worldwide efforts to abolish nuclear weapons, to strengthen international law and institutions, and to inspire and empower a new generation of peace leaders. Founded in 1982, the Foundation is comprised of individuals and organizations worldwide who realize the imperative for peace in the Nuclear Age. The Nuclear Age Peace Foundation is a non-profit, nonpartisan international education and advocacy organization. It has consultative status to the United Nations Economic and Social Council and is recognized by the UN as a Peace Messenger Organization.
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