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Russia’s Withdrawal From CTBT Does Not Mean It Plans to Conduct Nuclear Tests – Kremlin

Kremlin, MoscowInternationalIndiaAfricaMOSCOW (Sputnik) – The possibility that Russia may refuse to ratify the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) does not mean an intention to conduct these nuclear tests, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Friday. During the plenary session of the Valdai Discussion Club on Thursday, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that Moscow could mirror Washington’s stance, withdrawing the ratification of the treaty from the lower house of the parliament. Russian parliamentary speaker Vyacheslav Volodin said on Friday that the lower house will consider withdrawing the ratification of the document at its earliest session as a mirror response to the United States. “First of all, he [the president] meant the need to bring the de facto situation to a common denominator. Because a long time ago we signed and ratified [the treaty], but the Americans did not ratify. And in order to bring it to a common denominator, the president allowed the possibility of withdrawal this ratification, Volodin stated his readiness to do this. This does not mean a statement of intention to conduct nuclear tests,” Peskov told reporters.AnalysisNew START Most Important Arms Control Treaty That US, Russia Must Keep7 August, 23:22 GMTThe remark of Russian President Vladimir Putin on tests of the country’s nuclear-capable Burevestnik cruise missile meant that Russia continues to develop them, Kremlin spokesman said.

"The president said, he made a statement, that we continue to develop these weapons systems. This topic has repeatedly appeared in recent weeks on the international information agenda, it was of interest to the Valdai participants," Peskov told reporters when asked to comment on the remark.

Russian President Vladimir Putin told the Valdai Discussion Club on Thursday that the country had successfully carried out the final test of its Burevestnik cruise missile.Russia does not strike civilian targets, but only military infrastructure facilities, places where military personnel and representatives of the military leadership gather, Dmitry Peskov said on Friday, commenting on allegations that civilians were killed in the village of Groza as a result of Russia’s attack.”We continue to repeat that the Russian military does not strike civilian targets, strikes are carried out against military infrastructure facilities, places where military personnel and representatives of the military leadership gather,” Peskov told reporters.There have been no final conclusions on why the plane of Wagner group founder Yevgeny Prigozhin crashed, it is necessary to wait for a report on the results of the investigation, Peskov said.At the Valdai forum in Sochi on Thursday, Russian President Vladimir Putin said, citing Russian Investigative Committee head Alexander Bastrykin, that the plane with Prigozhin aboard suffered no external impact when it crashed, adding that fragments of hand grenades were found in the bodies of those killed.”There have not yet been any final conclusions or a final report from investigators,” Peskov told reporters, adding that any official statements can be expected only after the investigation is completed.One of the established facts is that fragments of hand grenades were found in the bodies of those killed, the official said, adding that the investigation continues.Kremlin spokesman said Vladimir Putin will hold a meeting with Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia Al Sudani in Moscow from October 10-11.”[The Putin-Al Sudani] negotiations will take place on October 10. This will be the official visit of the prime minister of Iraq. There will be Russian-Iraqi negotiations, there will also be communication with Al Sudani in the format of a working breakfast,” Peskov told reporters.The leaders will also participate at the plenary session of the Russian Energy Week on October 11, the official added.

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