The new administration of U.S. President Joe Biden is planning to offer Russia a five-year extension of a nuclear arms treaty that is set to expire February 5, U.S. officials said Thursday.
Biden national security adviser Jake Sullivan was set to make the offer to Russia’s ambassador to the U.S., Anatoly Antonov, on Thursday afternoon, one official said.
The move is likely to be welcomed by Moscow and American allies in Europe.
NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg on Thursday said the U.S. and Russia should extend the treaty and broaden it.
“We should not end up in a situation with no limitation on nuclear warheads, and New START will expire within days,” Stoltenberg told reporters in Brussels.
“An extension of the New START is not the end, it’s the beginning of our efforts to further strengthen arms control,” Stoltenberg said.
The treaty was signed in 2010 by then-U.S. President Barack Obama and then-Russian President Dmitry Medvedev. Under the pact, each country is limited to no more than 1,550 deployed nuclear warheads.
Former U.S. President Donald Trump had attacked the deal, contending that it put the United States at a disadvantage.