13 December 2001
Text: U.S. Welcomes Russia's Response to Decision on ABM Treaty
(Putin said withdrawal from treaty poses no threat to Russia) (340)
The United States welcomes Russian President Vladimir Putin's
statement that the U.S. decision to withdraw from the Anti-Ballistic
Missile (ABM) Treaty presents "no threat to the national security of
the Russian Federation."
White House Spokesman Ari Fleischer added that Russia's and the United
States' commitments to deep reductions in offensive strategic nuclear
forces "will result in the lowest level of strategic nuclear weapons
deployed by our two countries in decades."
He noted the two countries' "shared desire to continue the essential
work of building a new relationship for a new century."
Following is the White House text:
THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
December 13, 2001
Statement by the Press Secretary
RESPONSE TO RUSSIAN STATEMENT ON U.S. ABM TREATY WITHDRAWAL
The United States welcomes President Putin's statement. We agree with
President Putin that "the decision taken by the President of the
United States presents no threat to the national security of the
We have worked intensively with Russia to create a new strategic
framework for our relationship based on mutual interests and
cooperation across a broad range of political, economic, and security
issues. Together, the United States and Russia have made substantial
progress in our efforts and look forward to even greater progress in
The United States in particular welcomes Russia's commitment to deep
reductions in its level of offensive strategic nuclear forces.
Combined with the reductions of U.S. strategic nuclear forces
announced by President Bush in November, this action will result in
the lowest level of strategic nuclear weapons deployed by our two
countries in decades. We will work with Russia to formalize this
arrangement on offensive forces, including appropriate verification
and transparency measures.
Russia's announcement of nuclear reductions and its commitment to
continue to conduct close consultations with the United States reflect
our shared desire to continue the essential work of building a new
relationship for a new century.
(Distributed by the Office of International Information Programs, U.S.
Department of State. Web site: http://usinfo.state.gov)