Moscow cannot extend Nunn-Lugar for its outdated legal basis - Foreign Ministry

The legal foundations on which Russian-U.S. cooperation is based under the Cooperative Threat Reduction Program, known also as the Nunn-Lugar Program, have become outdated, the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

"We have received a proposal from the U.S. on extending the 1992 Agreement (the Nunn-Lugar Program), which will expire in June 2013. Our American partners know that their proposal is inconsistent with our ideas concerning the forms and the basis of our further cooperation. In particular, it requires a different and more modern legal framework," the ministry said.

At the same time, Moscow has a positive view on "cooperation within the framework of the Russian-U.S. agreement on the safe and secure transportation, storage and destruction of weapons and the prevention of weapons proliferation of June 17, 1992, known in the U.S. as the Nunn-Lugar Program," it said.

"According to Russian estimates, Russia has received assistance worth about $5 billion for the purposes of the said program in the past 20 years," it said.

"The implementation of bilateral agreements has been aimed at attaining important disarmament goals, particularly the destruction of chemical weapons stockpiles, the disposal of nuclear submarines decommissioned from the Soviet and Russian Navy, the elimination of strategic offensive weapons, and the improvement of physical protection of nuclear facilities. In addition, the U.S. assistance has been aimed at addressing some environmental and nature protection problems important for a number of our regions," it said.

"Some media outlets have alleged that biological weapons stockpiles have also been destroyed under this program. Such insinuations are untrue, as Russia is fully complying with its international obligations as regards the prohibition of biological weapons," it said.

"Russia has significantly increased its own budget appropriations to honor its international disarmament obligations in the past years. For instance, the financing of the destruction of chemical weapons and disposal of nuclear submarines alone has exceeded $7 billion," the Foreign Ministry said.

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