Russia Rejects Nuclear Talks Amid Ukraine Conflict

Russian Foreign Minister Asserts Moscow's Stance on Nuclear Arms Control
Nuclear war

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Russian Foreign Minister Asserts Moscow’s Stance on Nuclear Arms Control

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov announced today that Russia will not engage in discussions with the United States regarding nuclear arms control while the US continues to support Ukraine in its conflict with Russia. Lavrov stated that the West, not Ukraine, will determine the conditions for ending the war, indicating a stance of non-negotiation with Ukraine over its future.

Lavrov firmly stated that Russia would not entertain the idea of Ukraine joining NATO as a condition for peace. These remarks come amidst reports of escalating tensions, including drone strikes on both sides of the Russian-Ukrainian border and the temporary closure of a Moscow airport.

In response to the ongoing conflict, Western allies of Ukraine are launching an “artillery coalition” aimed at bolstering Ukraine’s armed forces against Russia. This 23-country effort, led by France and the United States, is part of a broader coalition known as the Ramstein contact group, with the goal of enhancing Ukraine’s artillery capabilities in both the short and long term.

French Defense Minister Sebastien Lecornu, leading the ceremony, highlighted France’s commitment to supporting Ukraine by providing 50 precision-guided missiles per month and expediting the production of Caesar howitzers. These efforts are intended to strengthen Ukraine’s defense capabilities in the face of ongoing attacks.

Reports from Russian officials claim that Ukraine carried out overnight drone and missile attacks in the border city of Belgorod. Russian air defenses reportedly intercepted 10 Ukrainian missiles, with one woman sustaining injuries and property damage reported. This follows previous attacks, including a drone strike in December that killed 25 people in Belgorod, prompting precautions such as reinforcing bus stops with sandbags and concrete blocks.

The Ukrainian Air Force reported shooting down 22 of 33 Russian drones launched against the country during the night. While Russia’s attacks focused on eastern and southern regions, including Kharkiv, Ukrainian authorities confirmed one civilian killed and two injured in attacks the previous day.

In light of these developments, Lavrov expressed skepticism about the West’s interest in peace talks and criticized Western support for Ukraine’s use of long-range weapons against Russia. He also rejected a US proposal to resume talks on “strategic stability” between the two countries regarding their nuclear arsenals, citing the West’s alleged hybrid war against Moscow as a barrier to meaningful dialogue.

The situation remains tense as diplomatic efforts continue to navigate the complexities of the conflict and its regional implications.