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Andrey Kortunov States P5 Declaration Was Important, but Now Its Members Should Meet on Broader Issues

Jan. 4, 2022 (EIRNS)—Andrey Kortunov, director of the Russia International Affairs Council (RIAC), remarked that the Jan. 3 joint statement by the five nuclear weapons powers, affirming that “a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought” was an important one, that echoed the sentiment stated in those words by the late U.S. President Ronald Reagan and former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev at their summit in Reykjavik in Oct. 11-12, 1986. He further stated, however, that aside from the statement itself, “it should be remembered that the problem of international security is not confined to the risk [that] nuclear weapons might be used. Likewise it is essential to avoid getting back into the pre-nuclear era, which was by no means an optimal one from the standpoint of security,” TASS quoted him as saying. Kortunov emphasized that aside from removing the nuclear war factor from politics, there are other changes that should take place “in favor of greater strategic stability.”

For this purpose, he said, it would be important for the five nuclear powers—which are also the UN Security Council permanent five (P5)—to hold a summit and come to an agreement on other “positive shifts,” not just on nuclear weapons, but also on broader issues involving universal political stability. But, he underscored, even before such a summit, “some agreement must be concluded between the United States and Russia, because these two countries have the most significant nuclear potential and bear special responsibility for international security.” He expressed the hope that the upcoming U.S.-Russia talks on security guarantees that will begin Jan. 10 will go beyond European security or Russia-NATO relations (Jan. 13 and Jan. 12). “It is essential to touch upon a far wider range of strategic stability issues, such as the future of nuclear weapons, because without such an agreement, it would be hard to expect that third countries would be prepared to get plugged into the nuclear arms control process.”

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