According to a joint statement released by the Kremlin on Monday, China, Russia, the United States, and France have pledged to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons and nuclear war.
It stated that the five permanent members of the UN Security Council consider it their primary responsibility to avert nuclear war and reduce strategic risks while also trying to engage with other countries to establish a secure environment.
The Russian-language version of the statement stated, “We declare that there can be no winners in a nuclear war, and it should never be initiated.”
“As the use of nuclear weapons would have far-reaching implications, we also confirm that nuclear weapons should be used for defensive purposes, a deterrent against aggression, and war prevention as long as they exist.”
France has also provided a statement, which emphasized that the five states reaffirmed their commitment to nuclear arms control and disarmament. It was said that bilateral and multilateral approaches to nuclear weapons control would be maintained.
The statement comes amid rising geopolitical tensions between Moscow and Western nations over Russia’s military buildup near Ukraine’s border. Moscow claims it has the authority to manoeuvre its army throughout its own territory as it sees fit.
Last Thursday, US Vice President Joe Biden warned his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin that any act against Ukraine would be met with sanctions and an increased US presence in Europe, where tensions are high following Russia’s military buildup along the border.