Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on Friday said he had submitted a landmark nuclear arms reduction treaty with the United States to the lower house of parliament for ratification.
“I today submitted for ratification the agreement on reducing strategic offensive arms,” Medvedev told members of the ruling United Russia party, which has a majority in the lower house, the Duma.
Signed by Medvedev and President Barack Obama in Prague on April 8, the successor to the 1991 Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START I) commits the former Cold War foes to reducing deployed nuclear warheads by about 30 percent.
Approval from the U.S. Senate and the Duma is required for the treaty to enter force.
Medvedev told United Russia party leaders to ensure the new treaty was ratified at the same time as the United States, but not a moment earlier or later.
Obama said earlier this month that he hoped the U.S. Senate would ratify the new START treaty by November, though Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Democrat, cautioned in April that the new treaty may not be ratified until early 2011.
(Reporting by Denis Dyomkin, writing by Guy Faulconbridge)