WASHINGTON - US and Russian negotiators will hold talks this year on issues ranging from missile defense to cyber security, hoping to set the stage for a renewed arms control push once elections are over in both countries, the top US arms negotiator said on Thursday.
Ellen Tauscher, undersecretary of state for arms control, said a year after the New START nuclear arms treaty with Russia that the United States was still committed to returning to the negotiating table to discuss cuts in strategic and tactical nuclear weapons.
But with Europe working on a nuclear deterrence review, elections in Russia and the United States, and Moscow largely satisfied with nuclear stockpile levels following the New START treaty, Tauscher said the timing was not right for a new round of nuclear talks.
"We would like to get back to talks ... but I think we're sanguine about the fact that they're not ready to do it," she told defense writers. "So what we've decided to do is to multitask and to use this next six to eight months to do these ... strategic stability talks."