Russia’s Sarmat ICBMInternationalIndiaAfricaWASHINGTON (Sputnik) – Arms control cannot take place regardless of geopolitical realities and the general negativity in the US-Russian relations, Russian Ambassador to Washington Anatoly Antonov said. “The overall negativity in US-Russian relations cannot but affect arms control. It is impossible to view these matters in isolation from the politico-military and geostrategic realities,” Antonov told Newsweek. He said the anti-Russian coalition has taken on a nuclear dimension, with NATO positioning itself as a nuclear alliance and actively pursuing nuclear sharing missions, adding that Russia cannot afford to ignore NATO’s cumulative nuclear capabilities when considering the issue of the New START treaty’s future. “The United States uses a twisted logic. On the one hand, they refuse to engage with us on a business-as-usual basis. At the same time, they insist on returning to the regular cooperation on the issue of the Treaty verification regime. The U.S. military is clearly itching to get into Russian bases which store nuclear weapons,” Antonov said. On February 21, Russian President Vladimir Putin said in an address to the Federal Assembly that Moscow was suspending participation in the Russian-US New START Treaty, stressing that the country was not withdrawing from it. The president noted that there was a need to understand what countries such as France and the United Kingdom consider to be as their strategic arsenals, NATO’s combined strike potential, and how Russia will take them into account.