New START (Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty) is a treaty between the United States and Russia to reduce and limit their nuclear arsenals. The treaty was sign in 2010 and entered into force in 2011. Succeeding the previous START treaty, which had expired in 2009.
The New START treaty limits each country to a maximum of 1,550 deployed nuclear warheads. Which is a reduction from the previous limit of 2,200. It also limits each government to a maximum of 700 deployed intercontinental ballistic missiles, submarine-launched ballistic missiles. And heavy bombers equipped for nuclear armaments. The treaty includes a comprehensive verification regime to ensure compliance with the limits and other provisions, including on-site inspections and data exchanges. The treaty is set to expire on February 5, 2026, but the two sides have the option to extend it for up to five years.
New START is consider a key arms control agreement. As it is the only remaining nuclear arms reduction treaty between the United States and Russia. Its extension beyond 2026 is seen as critical to maintaining strategic stability and reducing the risk of a nuclear conflict between the two nations.
The negotiations for New START began in April 2009, and the treaty was sign by U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on April 8, 2010. The U.S. Senate ratified the treaty on December 22, 2010, and the Russian Duma on January 25, 2011. It entered into force on February 5, 2011, and will remain in force for ten years unless extended.
In addition to the limits on deployed nuclear warheads and delivery systems. New START also includes data exchanges, notifications, and inspection provisions. Eachside must provide regular updates on the status and movements of its nuclear forces and facilities. The treaty allows for 18 annual on-site inspections at facilities that are relevant to the treaty’s provisions.
The New START treaty has been praise by arms control advocates and experts for its effectiveness in reducing nuclear stockpiles and increasing transparency and predictability between the two nations. However, the treaty has also been subject to criticism from some quarters, particularly in the U.S., where some lawmakers have expressed concerns about the verification regime and the potential for Russia to cheat on the treaty’s limits. Despite these concerns, the U.S. and Russia have continued to engage in talks on the treaty’s extension beyond 2026. The two sides have expressed a willingness to extend the treaty. But negotiations have been complicate by a range of factors. Including the broader deterioration in U.S.-Russia relations, concerns about Russia’s development of new nuclear weapons and domestic political
considerations in both countries.