Inside Story

Will Russia’s suspension of nuclear treaty trigger an arms race?

Russia withdraws its participation from the last remaining nuclear treaty with the US.

Russian President Vladimir Putin says his country is suspending its role in the new Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty – or START – with the United States.

Experts say Russia has the largest stockpile of nuclear weapons in the world, with close to 6,000 warheads.

START limits the strategic nuclear arms arsenals of both Russia and the United States.

Putin says Russia is not completely withdrawing.

But the treaty is due to lapse in 2026 – and that will remove the last constraint on the arsenals of the world’s two major nuclear powers.

So could Putin’s decision signal the start of an arms race?

Presenter: Nick Clark


Donald Jensen- Russia Director at the US Institute of Peace. He is also former US diplomat in Moscow and former Soviet weapons inspector.

Rabia Akhtar- Director of the Centre for Security, Strategy and Policy Research at University of Lahore.

Dmitry Babich- political commentator for Russian state-owned news agency Rossiya Segodnya.