US State Department said Russia has "unilaterally postponed" talks with the United States aimed at resuming nuclear weapons inspections that were set to take place in Cairo.

The US said it was ready to reschedule the talks at the earliest possible date.
The US said it was ready to reschedule the talks at the earliest possible date. (Reuters Archive)

Russia has announced that it was postponing highly-anticipated arms control talks with the United States, scheduled to take place in Egypt despite tensions over the Ukraine conflict.

"The session of the bilateral coordinating committee on the Russian-American START Treaty, previously scheduled to take place in Cairo between November 29 and December 6, will not take place on the dates indicated," a foreign ministry spokesperson told state-run news agency TASS on Monday.

"The event is postponed to a later date," the spokesperson was cited as saying.

No other details were provided.

US State Department spokesperson said Russia has "unilaterally postponed" talks with the United States.

The spokesperson said Washington was ready to reschedule the talks at the earliest possible date.

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Resumption of inspections

The United States had said this month that it expected to meet with Russia soon to discuss the possible resumption of inspections under New START, a key nuclear disarmament treaty between the two countries.

Moscow announced in August that it was suspending US inspections of its military sites under New START, saying it was responding to American obstruction of inspections by Russia.

New START is the last bilateral agreement of its kind between the world's two main nuclear powers.

Signed in 2010, it limited the arsenals of the two countries to a maximum of 1,550 deployed strategic nuclear warheads each – a reduction of nearly 30 percent from the previous limit set in 2002.

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Source: AFP