26 September 1997


(Issued after the signing ceremony in New York 9/26) (550)

(Following is a fact sheet on the START II Protocol and Letters on
Early Deactivation issued by the State Department at the conclusion of
the signing ceremony September 26, 1997.)



START II Protocol

-- Formal title: Protocol to the Treaty Between the United States of
America and the Russian Federation on Further Reductions and
Limitations of Strategic Offensive Arms of January 3, 1993.

--The Protocol:

-- extends the date by which the START II limitations and reductions
must be completed from January 1, 2003 to December 31, 2007.

-- extends the date by which the interim limitations and reductions of
the START II Treaty must be carried out from seven years after entry
into force of the START Treaty (December 5, 2001) to December 31,

-- states that the Parties may conclude an agreement on a program of
assistance for the purposes of facilitating and accelerating
implementation of the START II reductions and limitations. This
provision replaces the START II provision that required early
implementation of the START II reductions if the Parties concluded,
within one year of START II entry-into-force, an agreement on a
program of assistance.

-- is subject to ratification by each Party and will enter into force
on the date when the instruments of ratification are exchanged.

Joint Agreed Statement

-- Records the agreement between the United States and the Russian
Federation that henceforth Minuteman III ICBM downloading under START
II can be carried out at any time before December 31, 2007, the
deadline for completing all Treaty-mandated reductions. This ensures
that deMIRVing under START II will take place in a stable and
equivalent manner. This Joint Agreed Statement has no effect on the
downloading provisions of the START I Treaty, which remain unchanged.

Exchange of Letters on Early Deactivation

-- Legally codifies the commitment made at Helsinki that the United
States and the Russian Federation will deactivate by December 31, 2003
all strategic nuclear delivery vehicles which, under the START II
Treaty, will be eliminated by December 31, 2007.

-- Deactivation will be achieved by removing the nuclear reentry
vehicles from the missiles, or by taking other jointly agreed steps.

-- The letters on deactivation will enter into force when START II
enters into force.

-- Immediately upon entry into force of START II, U.S. and Russian
experts will begin work on understandings concerning methods of
deactivation and on parameters of a U.S. program of assistance to
Russia for implementation of deactivation.

-- The Russian letter contains a unilateral statement: "Taking into
account the supreme national interests of the country, the Russian
Federation proceeds from the understanding that well in advance of the
above deactivation deadline the START III Treaty will be achieved and
will enter into force." The U.S. letter takes note of this Russian

Relevant Dates

-- The START I Treaty entered into force on December 5, 1994; it was
signed on July 31, 1991.

-- The U.S. Senate gave its advice and consent to ratification of the
START II Treaty on January 26, 1996. The START II Treaty was signed on
January 3, 1993.

-- The Clinton-Yeltsin Helsinki Summit took place on March 20-21,