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Gorbachev Urges Russia, U.S. to Resume Nuclear Talks

Former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev Alexander Zemlianichenko / AP

Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev has urged Moscow and Washington to resume talks across the political agenda, particularly on the nuclear issue, the RIA Novosti news agency reported Monday.

Speaking in Reykjavik to mark the 30th anniversary of the 1986 Soviet-American summit, Gorbachev said that the world was about to cross “a dangerous line.”

We need to resume dialogue. Terminating talks was our biggest mistake," he told RIA Novosti.

There has been a collapse of mutual trust [between Russia and the United States.] I believe that we need to resume talks across the agenda, and on the nuclear issue above all,” he said.

As long as nuclear weapons exist, there is a risk that they could be used — by accident, via a technical failure, or though evil will of man, madmen or terrorists,” Gorbachev said.

A nuclear-free world is not a utopia, but an imperative. Yet it can be achieved only through the demilitarization of international relations.”

The Kremlin announced on Oct. 3 that it had decided to suspend a nuclear disarmament treaty with Washington, claiming that the United States’ “unfriendly actions” posed a “strategic threat to stability.”

The protocol, which only came into force in 2010, stipulates that each side must dispose of 34 metric tons of weapons-grade plutonium each year.

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