Russia highlights Central Asia's role in nuclear non-proliferation
At a recent seminar on strengthening global nuclear regimes, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov emphasized the unique contributions of Central Asian nations to non-proliferation efforts.
Ryabkov specifically pointed to the nuclear-free zone established by Central Asian states in 2006, reports the Kommersant. However, he noted the incomplete legal framework surrounding this since the U.S. has yet to ratify the treaty.
Despite this, the deputy foreign minister reiterated Russia's commitment as a responsible nuclear power during the seminar attended by regional officials. He stressed the importance of non-proliferation dialogues amid current global security framework uncertainties.
Ahead of a preparatory committee session for the treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) in Vienna, Ryabkov criticized the overt politicization of last year's review conference, particularly regarding Ukraine. But he remains optimistic about the NPT's vital role.
As coordinator of the Nuclear Five states, Russia aims for concrete actions over just dialogue, Ryabkov explained. Challenges are expected in nuclear discussions due to stark divisions between Russia and the West.
Moscow remains skeptical of U.S. approaches, given inconsistent messaging against the backdrop of the Ukraine conflict. While open to arms control talks, the Kremlin seeks substantive proposals from Washington.