Russia gives nod to New START nuclear treaty extension

Russia gives nod to New START nuclear treaty extension

The vote came a day after a phone call between US President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin

US President Joe Biden and Vladimir Putin. Credit: AFP Photo

The lower house of the Russian parliament on Wednesday approved the extension of the last remaining nuclear arms control pact days before it's due to expire.

The State Duma voted unanimously to extend the New START treaty for five years.

The vote came a day after a phone call between US President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin, in which they voiced satisfaction with the exchange of diplomatic notes about extending the New START treaty. They agreed to complete the necessary procedures in the next few days, according to the Kremlin.

The pact's extension doesn't require congressional approval in the US, but Russian lawmakers must ratify the move. Top members of the Kremlin-controlled parliament said they would fast-track the issue and complete the necessary steps to extend the treaty this week.