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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Nuclear Policy Set To Change

Russia will change its policy on the use of nuclear and other weapons as part of a new military doctrine that could take effect by the year’s end, Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev said Thursday.

The new doctrine, which is being drafted by military officials, would “formulate provisions” on nuclear and preventive strikes that would “differ slightly from the ones that were before,” Patrushev told reporters without elaborating, RIA-Novosti reported.

President Dmitry Medvedev will get the draft doctrine for approval by the end of the year, Patrushev said at another news conference Wednesday, RIA-Novosti reported Thursday.

The content of the doctrine will be made public, he said.

In December, when the government announced plans for a new military doctrine, the deputy head of the General Staff, Anatoly Nagovitsyn, told Interfax that the part of the document regulating the use of nuclear weapons would not be released.

The current military doctrine, which took effect in April 2000, says Russia can “use nuclear weapons in response to attacks against it or its allies with nuclear weapons or other types of weapons of mass destruction, as well in response to large-scale aggression involving conventional weapons in circumstances that threaten national security of the Russian Federation,” according to RIA-Novosti.

However, the doctrine forbids Russia to use nuclear weapons against members of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty that have no nuclear weapons unless they attack Russia jointly with a state that has nuclear weapons, RIA-Novosti said. Only five of the treaty’s 189 members — the United States, Russia, Britain, China and France — are confirmed to have nuclear weapons.

Medvedev signed off on another updated key policy paper — Russia’s national security strategy — in May. The strategy replaced a 2000 document and was published by the Security Council.