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‘US continues to pester China’: Beijing rejects Washington’s fresh invite to join arms-control talks with Russia

‘US continues to pester China’: Beijing rejects Washington’s fresh invite to join arms-control talks with Russia

China on Friday rejected a new US invitation to join arms control talks with Russia. Washington has demanded that China take part in talks on a successor to the New START treaty, which caps the nuclear warheads the US and Russia possess.

Beijing said in response that it would only join the talks if the US reduced its nuclear arsenal to match China’s much smaller deterrent.

The US issued a fresh invitation to the talks on Thursday. Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said that “China’s opposition of the so-called trilateral arms control negotiations is very clear.”

“However, the US continues to pester China, even distorting China’s position,” AFP quoted Zhao as saying. He noted that Washington’s proposal for trilateral negotiations was “neither serious nor sincere,” urging the US to instead respond to Russia’s call for an extension of the treaty and a further reduction of its own nuclear arsenal.