Russia's Foreign Ministry on Tuesday published a statement on its website in response to accusations voiced by U.S. President Barack Obama during the weekend's nuclear security summit in Washington, the RBC news agency reported.
Obama said that Moscow's recent refusal to resume the process of nuclear disarmament was the result of President Vladimir Putin's policy which focuses on increasing the country's military power instead of on internal economic development, the Reuters news agency reported last week.
"My preference would be to bring down our nuclear arsenal further," Obama told reporters at the conclusion of the summit.
In response to Obama's speech, the Russian Foreign Ministry said that "U.S.-Russian relations have deteriorated significantly due to the destructive actions of the U.S." and "The U.S. has frozen all working channels of cooperation with the Russian side, cutting down the activities of the joint presidential commission and stopping bilateral military contacts" over Russia's actions in Ukraine and Crimea.
Nevertheless, Russia is ready to proceed with the talks, provided that "Washington will be guided by the fundamental principles of equality, mutual respect of interests and avoidance of damaging the other state's security," the statement reads.
The Ministry added that "the U.S. current administration has launched the most large-scale modernization of the country's nuclear arsenal since the end of the Cold War," which, according to the Ministry's statement, is expected to cost about $350 billion in the next 10 years.
Russia refused to participate in the nuclear summit held in Washington from March 31 to April 1 due to "deficient interaction on issues and topics during the summit preliminary study," RBC reported.