FILE - In this file photo taken on Wednesday, June 24, 2020, Russian RS-24 Yars ballistic missiles roll in Red Square during the Victory Day military parade marking the 75th anniversary of the Nazi defeat in Moscow, Russia. Russia and the United States exchanged documents Tuesday Jan. 26, 2021, to extend the New START nuclear treaty, their last remaining arms control pact, the Kremlin said. The Kremlin readout of a phone call between U.S. President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin said they voiced satisfaction with the move. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko, File)
MOSCOW, Jan 27: The lower house of Russian parliament on Wednesday approved the extension of the last remaining nuclear arms control pact days before it’s due to expire.
The State Duma voted unanimously to extend the New START treaty for five years. The vote came a day after a phone call between U.S. President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin, in which they voiced satisfaction with the exchange of diplomatic notes about extending the New START treaty. They agreed to complete the necessary procedures in the next few days, according to the Kremlin.
The pact’s extension doesn’t require congressional approval in the U.S., but Russian lawmakers must ratify the move. Top members of the Kremlin-controlled parliament said they would fast-track the issue and complete the necessary steps to extend the treaty this week.