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 You are in: Under Secretary for Arms Control and International Security > Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation (ISN) > Releases > Fact Sheets > 2001
Fact Sheet
Bureau of Arms Control
Washington, DC
December 5, 2001

START Treaty Final Reductions

December 5, 2001, marks the successful completion of the third and final phase of reductions in strategic offensive arms required by the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START Treaty). The United States and Russia each now maintain fewer than the Treaty’s mandated limits of 1,600 deployed strategic delivery vehicles and 6,000 accountable warheads, a reduction of some 30 to 40 percent of aggregate levels since 1994, when the Treaty entered into force. In addition, all nuclear warheads and strategic offensive arms have been removed from Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine.

The START Treaty reductions, inspection regime, notifications and telemetry exchanges have produced stabilizing changes that have contributed to international security and strategic stability.

The START Treaty was signed in Moscow on July 31, 1991, by President George H. W. Bush, for the United States, and President Mikhail Gorbachev, for the Soviet Union. The instruments of ratification of the START Treaty were exchanged in Budapest, Hungary, in December 1994, after several years of sustained effort to adapt the Treaty's original bilateral implementation regime to a new multilateral context that established Belarus, Kazakhstan, Russia, and Ukraine as the legal successors to the Soviet Union for the purposes of the START Treaty.

Although the START Treaty's required reductions have been met within the required seven years, the Treaty, including its inspection and verification provisions, remains in force. The Treaty's fifteen-year duration may be extended by agreement among the Parties for successive five-year periods.

A significant aspect of the START Treaty’s regime lies in its use of rigorous, equitable and verifiable methods to monitor its implementation. The right to perform on-site inspections and other verification measures will continue for the duration of the Treaty, in order to verify compliance. In addition, data exchanges and notifications on each side’s strategic systems and facilities as well as exchanges of telemetry data from missile flight tests will help to maintain confidence in the status and level of the Parties' strategic forces. The Parties will also continue to meet as necessary within the framework of the Treaty's implementing body, the Joint Compliance and Inspection Commission, which the Treaty established to ensure continued effective implementation of the Treaty and to seek resolution of compliance and implementation issues.

START has achieved significant reductions from Cold War nuclear force levels. President George W. Bush is committed to achieve significant additional cuts in offensive nuclear forces to the lowest possible number of nuclear weapons consistent with our national security needs and our obligations to friends and allies. The United States seeks to create a new strategic framework with Russia based on a broad array of cooperation on political, economic, and security issues, including substantial reductions in the number of operationally deployed nuclear forces and measures to promote confidence and transparency. Thus, during the November 2001 Washington/Crawford Summit, President Bush announced that the United States will further reduce the number of operationally deployed warheads to between 1,700 and 2,200 over the next ten years, a level consistent with American security.


DECEMBER 5, 2001

United States

Category of Data and Central Limit

Former Soviet Union

Dec 5,

Dec 5, 2001

Dec 5, 1994

* Projected
Dec 5, 2001



Deployed ICBMs and Their Associated Launchers, Deployed SLBMs and Their Associated Launchers, and Deployed Heavy Bombers:


 ~ 1,140



Warheads Attributed to Deployed ICBMs, Deployed SLBMs, and Deployed Heavy Bombers:


~ 5,520



Warheads Attributed to Deployed ICBMs and Deployed SLBMs:


~ 4,900



Throw-weight of Deployed
ICBMs and Deployed SLBMs:
3,600 metric tons


~ 3,320

* The Parties will exchange formal force data in January 2002. The START I Treaty prohibits the U.S. Government from releasing the other Parties’ final Phase III data until April 2002.

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