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START ending, but US and Russia still agree on nuke verification

The main details of a new Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty have already been worked out and now the US and Russia have to agree on verification and warheads counting issues, non-proliferation expert Peter Crail told RT.

The current version of the treaty known as START expires on December 5. On Monday, Russia and the US began the eighth round of negotiations on upgrading the Cold War-era document.

Most of the major details of a new treaty have already been hammered out, said Crail, a research analyst at the Arms Control Association. “It’s now down to narrowing out technical details, mostly related to verification issues.”

Presidents Barack Obama and Dmitry Medvedev “came to an agreement on the broad outlines during this summer” and since then there’ve been a lot of negotiations on details. One of the issues the sides have to agree on, Crail said, is counting the warheads and delivery systems.

“We’ve seen a very high level commitment by both presidents to get this done by the deadline,” he said.