Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov, Moscow’s point man on arms control, accused the United States of “malicious fabrication”, TASS reported.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine – something Moscow calls a special military operation – has triggered the biggest confrontation between the West and Russia since the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis. Both Moscow and Washington have warned of the risk of a conflict between NATO and Russia.

Russia and the United States are by the biggest nuclear powers: together their arsenals hold about 90 per cent of the world’s nuclear weapons, and both have advanced military satellites orbiting the earth.


The United States casts Russia and China as its biggest nation-state competitors, and Washington says both Moscow and Beijing are developing a range of new weapons systems, including nuclear, cyber and space capabilities.

Russia says the post-Cold War dominance of the United States is crumbling and that Washington has for years sown chaos across the planet while ignoring the interests of other powers. Moscow says the United States too is developing a host of new weapons.

In the early years of the Cold War, after Russia leaped ahead in the space race and both sides developed intercontinental ballistic missiles, the West proposed a treaty to outlaw nuclear weapons in space.

The eventual result was the 1967 Outer Space Treaty which bans putting any weapons of mass destruction into orbit or in outer space.

In recent years, disagreements between Moscow and Washington have eroded the framework of arms control treaties that sought to reduce the risk of nuclear war between them.

The New York Times and ABC News reported earlier that the new US intelligence was related to Russian attempts to develop a space-based anti-satellite nuclear weapon.

It was not immediately clear why Russia would need a nuclear weapon to destroy a satellite.


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