Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said at a meeting with US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland on Tuesday that Russia was concerned over a new pact created between Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States (AUKUS).
“I also raised an issue before Mrs. Nuland with regard to our concern over the consequences of creating a new format, the AUKUS initiative, primarily for the nuclear non-proliferation regimes, and stressed that we would analyze all these developments very thoroughly, first of all, from the angle of how Australia as a non-nuclear state bound by an agreement on comprehensive safeguards with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) will honor this document in the context of its cooperation with two nuclear states in connection with the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons,” the senior Russian diplomat told TASS on Tuesday.
On September 15, Washington, Canberra and London announced the creation of AUKUS, a new security pact under which Australia was to build at least eight nuclear-powered submarines with the help of US technologies. Under the deal, Australia also plans to furnish its armed forces with US cruise missiles.
Due to the AUKUS pact, Canberra severed its largest ever defense contract with France worth over 50 billion euros for the delivery of submarines, saying that it no longer met Australia’s national interests.
In response, France accused the Australian authorities of deliberate deceit and recalled its ambassadors in Australia and the United States for consultations.