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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Duma Stalls START II Discussions

The State Duma on Tuesday again postponed discussions on the START II treaty after failing to meet a deadline for sending a related measure on nuclear weapons to President Boris Yeltsin, a news report said.

The Duma Council, had planned to review a bill outlining Russia's nuclear weapons program Tuesday.

But it delayed debate because no Duma factions except the liberal Yabloko party submitted proposals or suggestions for the measure, Interfax said.

The lawmakers want an additional measure outlining the nuclear weapons program before they act on the treaty.

Nikolai Kharitonov of the Agrarian Party said he had changed his mind and now supported the treaty after a meeting with Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov.

"As things stand now, ratification is in Russia's interest," Kharitonov was quoted by Interfax as saying. He suggested that Russia could enhance its prospects for Western financial aid by ratifying the accord.