A resolution rescinding Russia’s acceptance of the international convention forbidding nuclear weapons tests was successfully passed by the Russian parliament on Wednesday. This move is indicative of the severe deterioration in ties with the US as Moscow continues to wage war with Ukraine.
The bill was unanimously passed by the lower house, the Duma, and then adopted by the upper house, the Federation Council, by a vote of 156 to 0. President Vladimir Putin is expected to sign it shortly.
A few weeks ago, Putin pleaded with the lawmakers to alter course in order to mirror the US’s stance. The US signed the CTBT i.e., Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty but never ratified it.
Russia claims it is unlikely to resume nuclear testing up until Washington attempts to, but experts on arms control worry that it might be creeping closer to a test that, given the situation in Ukraine, the West would interpret as a dangerous escalation.
Sergei Ryabkov, Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister, stated that unless the US abandoned its ‘hostile’ approach, Moscow was not ready to start nuclear talks with the US.
Russia is alleged to have increased its nuclear blackmail against Ukraine as stated by the latter.
The CTBT, which has never been legally put into effect, has effectively outlawed nuclear testing. This century, no nation has carried out a nuclear explosion test exception being North Korea.
The previous month, CNN released pictures from satellites demonstrating the expansion of nuclear test locations across China, the US, and Russia.
In an effort to strengthen American detection capabilities for low-yield nuclear blasts worldwide, the US Energy Department announced last week that it had carried out a chemical blast on its testing facility in Nevada.
Prior to the vote on Wednesday, the deputy foreign minister, told Russian legislators that the explosion in Nevada was definitely a political statement.
According to Russia, the international network that identifies nuclear explosions will continue to receive data from its monitoring units.
Written by: Divyani Newar, College name: NEF Law College, 5th Semester, 3 Year LL.B., An intern under Legal Vidhiya