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Putin: Ratification of Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty is in Russia's Interests - 5 April, 2003

Russia is interested in the ratification of the Russian-American Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty (SOR), President Vladimir Putin told reporters Saturday after his visit of the staff of the Space Force.

He noted that the positions of Moscow and Washington "on the Iraq issue do not coincide." This, he said, "creates a definite unfavorable background for further work on the ratification of the SOR Treaty." The president stressed at the same time, "We will work with the deputies of the Federal Council and hope that we shall start the procedure of the treaty's ratification." Replying to a question put by newsmen whether the major powers are capable of containing proliferation of mass destruction weapons, he said, "definitely we are, if we keep on strengthening the system of international law and the non-proliferation system." "And this will be the more effective the better we coordinate our actions in this sphere," the president said, pointing out that this question "is the most important one" in the 21st century."

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