Russia Set to Withdraw , From Decades Old , Nuclear Test Ban.
NPR reports that Russia is poised to withdraw from a landmark ban on nuclear testing, the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty.
While Russia claims it will remain committed to the treaty, arms control advocates have warned the de-ratification is one step closer to a new global nuclear arms race.
We are in a bad place.
We are not yet in a terrible place, but we are in a bad place, Andrey Baklitskiy, a senior researcher at the UN Institute for Disarmament Research, via NPR.
The 1996 treaty was originally designed to stop the testing of all nuclear arms. .
NPR reports that arms control experts warn that the treaty played a key role in preventing new types of nuclear weapons from being developed.
The United States, Russia and China have all adhered to a voluntary moratorium on nuclear testing since the 1990s.
The treaty led to the creation of an international organization responsible for monitoring the world for nuclear tests.
The Vienna-based organization relies upon a network of seismographs, hydrophones and radionuclide detectors to detect even small nuclear explosions.
Data provided by the group has offered valuable insights into North Korea's nuclear weapons program.
NPR reports that while nine countries have signed the test ban treaty, not every country has "ratified" it, including the U.S. and China.
In 2000, Russia ratified the treaty, which it is now attempting to repeal in the Russian State Duma, the lower chamber of Moscow's Federal Assembly.