The United States of America and Russia will begin nuclear arms control talks this month since the remaining treaty between the two big countries is about to expire. According to CNN's latest report, a top U.S. arms control official announced on Monday, June 8, that a meeting for nuclear arms negotiations will be conducted by the United States and Russia. 

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The report confirmed that the time and place for the nuclear arms negotiations, which will be conducted in June, was already agreed on by Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov and U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Arms Control Marshall Billingslea. A number of key arms control pacts, with Open Skies Treaty as the most recent one, was abandoned by the Trump administration in favor of seeking a three-party agreement with Russia and China

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To widely scuttle the nuclear reduction treaty between the U.S. and Russia that will expire in February 2021, also called as "New START" or New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty, a trilateral agreement was insisted. Calls to participate in the trilateral talks were already dismissed by Beijing. Billingslea confirmed in a tweet posted on Monday, June 8, that China was invited to this month's discussion. 

"Will China show and negotiate in good faith?" wrote Billingslea. 

"We do absolutely expect that whatever arrangements are reached, the Chinese will be part of a trilateral framework going forward," he added, reiterating last month that a future arms control agreement is expected to be multilateral.  

U.S. and Russia will begin nuclear arms control talks as the remaining treaty is about to expire 

The incentive of China to join the talks is still unclear, as stated by Daryl Kimball, the executive director of the Arms Control Association, since the size of its nuclear arsenal is disproportionate in comparison to that of the U.S. and Russia. Almost 85% of the world's nuclear power weapon belongs to the latter two countries, which is more than 10 times the combined number of strategic nuclear warheads deployed by Britain, France, and China. 

Kimball also noted that the administration's escalated rhetoric toward China during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic will not have helped bring them to the table. The notion stating that China should not participate in the nuclear arms control until it reaches the levels of Russia, and Billingslea dismissed the U.S. in remarks at the Hudson Institute in May. 

Kimball said that it is good that Russia and the U.S. will conduct a meeting to discuss the nuclear arms control matters, but it should not be celebrated since the Trump administration seems to remain the same. 

"They're refusing to pick up Russia's offer to extend New START," said Kimball. 

"They appear to be still demanding new agreements that can't be negotiated before New START expires, not only with Russia but with China. So, I'm not jumping up and down for joy," he added.  

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