News / Europe

Obama Presses for US-Russia Nuclear Pact

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, left, meets with U. S. President Barack Obama on the sidelines of the the APEC summit in Yokohama, Japan, 14 Nov 2010
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, left, meets with U. S. President Barack Obama on the sidelines of the the APEC summit in Yokohama, Japan, 14 Nov 2010

Republican senators continue to express misgivings about a new nuclear-arms reduction treaty between the United States and Russia.  The comments follow President Barack Obama's assurances to his Russian counterpart that Senate ratification of the New START treaty will be a top priority in an end-of-year session of the U.S. Congress.

President Obama met with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on the sidelines of the just-concluded Asia-Pacific economic summit in Japan.  Earlier this year, the two men signed the new Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty, which would cut nuclear weapons stockpiles by as much as a third.

Mr. Obama promised an energetic lobbying effort to secure ratification of the pact.

"I reiterated my commitment to get the START treaty done during the lame duck session and I have communicated to Congress that it is a top priority," he said.

The U.S. constitution mandates the Senate must ratify foreign treaties before they go into effect.  Beginning next year, Democrats will have a greatly-reduced majority in the Senate, which could complicate ratification, unless the treaty is approved in the final weeks of this year.

Appearing on ABC's This Week program, South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham was asked if he intends to vote for ratification.

"In its current condition, no.  You have two impediments,"  Modernization - not only do we need a START treaty, we need to modernize our nuclear force, the weapons that are left to make sure they continue to be a deterrent.  And we need to make sure we can deploy missile-defense systems that are apart from START.  So there are two stumbling blocks."

In a bid to remove at least one stumbling block, administration officials say they would consider additional funds to maintain and modernize the existing U.S. nuclear arsenal.

Also appearing on This Week, former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright said the New START treaty must not be allowed to languish.

"First of all, it is a good treaty.  We remember [former] President [Ronald] Reagan saying 'trust but verify'.  And what has happened is that the verification procedures have not been in place for almost a year," she said.  "So we need the treaty for that [verification].  Plus, the relationship with the Russians is very important.  They have been very helpful on Iran.  And I hope very much that the lame-duck session [of Congress] recognizes the importance of the treaty."

The U.S. Congress returns to work Monday.

You May Like

Video 2nd American Reportedly Killed in Syria

Local television report says Abdirahman Muhumed left the area to fight for Islamic State militants More

WHO Fears Ebola Outbreak Could Infect 20,000 People

World Health Organization says outbreak 'continues to accelerate' but that most cases are concentrated in a few local areas More

Angelina Jolie Marries Brad Pitt

Actors wed in small private ceremony Saturday in France More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implanti
X
August 27, 2014 4:53 PM
A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Uneasy Calm Settles Over Israel, Gaza Strip

Israel and the Gaza Strip have been calm since a cease-fire set in Tuesday evening, ending seven weeks of hostilities. Hamas, which controls Gaza, declared victory. Israelis were more wart. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video India’s Leprosy Battle Stymied by Continuing Stigma

Medical advancements in the treatment of leprosy have greatly diminished its impact around the world, largely eliminating the disease from most countries. India made great strides in combating leprosy, but still accounts for a majority of the world’s new cases each year, and the number of newly infected Indians is rising - more than 130,000 recorded last year. Doctors there say the problem has more to do with society than science. VOA News reports from Kolkata.
Video

Video Northern California Quake: No Way to Know When Next One Will Hit

A magnitude 6.0 earthquake rocked northern California’s Napa Valley on Sunday. Roads twisted and water mains burst. It was the wine country’s most severe quake in 15 years, and while hospitals treated many people, no one was killed. Arash Arabasadi has more from Washington on what the future may hold for those residents living on a fault line.
Video

Video Scientists Unlock Mystery of Bird Flocks

How can flocks of birds, schools of fish or herds of antelope suddenly change direction -- all the individuals adjusting their movement in concert, at seemingly the same time? British researchers now have some insights into this behavior, which has puzzled scientists for a long time. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video Ukraine: Captured Troops Proof of Russian Role in Separatist Fight

Ukrainian officials say they have captured Russian soldiers on Ukrainian territory -- the latest accusation of Moscow's involvement in the conflict in eastern Ukraine. VOA's Gabe Joselow reports from the Ukrainian side of the battle, where soldiers are convinced of Russia's role.
Video

Video Rubber May Soon Come From Dandelions

Synthetic rubber has been around for more than a century, but quality tires for cars, trucks and aircraft still need up to 40 percent or more natural rubber content. As the source of natural rubber, the rubber tree, is prone to disease and can be affected by bad weather. So scientists are looking for replacements. And as VOA’s George Putic reports, they may have found one in a ubiquitous weed.
Video

Video Jewish Life in Argentina Reflected in Yiddish Tango

Jewish people from across Europe and Russia have been immigrating to Argentina for hundreds of years. They brought with them dance music that were eventually mixed with Argentine tango. The result is Yiddish tango -- a fusion of melodies and cultural experiences that is still evolving today. Elizabeth Lee reports from the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles, where one band is bringing Yiddish tango to an American audience.

AppleAndroid