Russian Chief of General Staff Anatoly Kvashnin believes that Russia and the United States need to hammer out a new agreement on strategic stability before amending the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty. "Now that we're talking that something's obsolete and we need to replace it, we have to work out and create something new first," he told a press briefing Sunday. The Chief of Staff pointed out that for the time being, international treaties reached on both the multilateral and the bilateral basis in the 1960s through 1980s still are the foundation of the current strategic stability. "The 1972 ABM Treaty is the basic among them," Kvashnin insisted. He recommended tackling the problem of strategic stability from the standpoint of qualitative and quantitative balance of the strategic offensive and defensive weapons.
As November 4 approaches (on this day, Russia and Belarus are to sign union programs), disputes between supporters and opponents of the integration become increasingly heated