U.S. military inspectors have conducted five inspections of Russia’s Strategic Missile Forces (SMF) arsenal over the last six months as part of the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START-3), SMF Commander Lt. Gen. Sergei Karakayev said on Monday.
“Starting December 2011 to the present, U.S. inspection teams conducted five inspections at the sites of SMF: in Yasnensk (Orenburg region), Yoshkar-Ola, Teikovsk (Ivanovo Region), and Irkutsk defense compounds as well as at the branch of the Peter the Great Military Academy on Strategic Missile Forces in Serpukhov,” Karakayev said.
According to the commander, Russia has the right to conduct 18 annual inspections in the U.S. in order to validate the accuracy of declared data on strategic offensive weapons, as well as to use its available national technical means of control. The U.S. has a similar right. According to the U.S. State Department, they have 1,004 ready to use launchers for land, sea and air-based missiles, and Russia has 881 launchers.
The new START treaty, which came into force on February 5, 2011, obliges Russia and the United States to reduce and limit the number of deployed and non-strategic offensive arms. Starting from April 6, 2011 Russia and the United States may hold inspections under the new agreement, with both exchanging information on the status of their strategic offensive arms on March 1 and September 1 of each year. The last exchange was in March 2012.