Russia, US to set up working groups on strategic stability

Russia, US to set up working groups on strategic stability

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Russia, US to set up working groups on strategic stability

According to Sergey Ryabkov, one of the groups will address arms control issues and the other will deal with technical aspects of the sides’ nuclear arsenals and “each other’s actions” that might have a strategic effect

Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov

 Russia and the United States have agreed to set up two working groups on strategic stability issues, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said on Thursday.

“We agreed to set up two working groups that will address these [strategic stability] issues,” he said.

“First, we will have to continue the exchange of signals, rather than questions and answers, which are the core of the work at the current stage. It can be done as the work proceeds. For instance, today the methodology included responding to questions that each side had sent to the other before,” he said, adding that the groups will be tasked to analyze each other’s approaches.

“Then, we will see more clearly when it is time for another offline meeting,” he noted.

According to Ryabkov, one of the groups will address arms control issues and the other will deal with technical aspects of the sides’ nuclear arsenals and “each other’s actions” that might have a strategic effect.

“In other words, concepts and theories on the one hand and practical aspects and what the sides have on the other hand,” he added.

A third round of consultations of interagency delegations of Russia and the US on strategic stability will be held after the meetings of two working groups which will be formed according to an agreement reached by the two sides in Geneva on Thursday, a joint statement on the outcomes of the US-Russia strategic stability dialogue in Geneva said.

“Today in Geneva, interagency delegations from the United States and the Russian Federation convened for the second meeting of the bilateral Strategic Stability Dialogue since President Biden and President Putin committed to an integrated, deliberate, and robust process in June. The United States delegation was led by Deputy Secretary of State Wendy R. Sherman, and the Russian delegation was led by Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov. The discussion was intensive and substantive,” according to the statement posted on the Russian Foreign Ministry’s website on Thursday.

According to the statement, “the two delegations agreed to form two interagency expert working groups – the Working Group on Principles and Objectives for Future Arms Control, and the Working Group on Capabilities and Actions with Strategic Effects” and additionally agreed that “the two working groups would commence their meetings, to be followed by a third plenary meeting.”

The first face-to-face round of Russian-US consultations on strategic stability in 2021 was held on July 28 in Geneva.