UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is concerned about the “erosion of the arms control regime” between the United States and Russia against the background of the situation developing around the Open Skies Treaty, the Secretary-General’s office told.

The United States on the eve of the summit of the Presidents of the Russian Federation and the United States, Vladimir Putin, and Joe Biden, informed Russia that they will not return to the Open Skies Treaty. The Russian Foreign Ministry expressed disappointment with the US move, saying that Washington missed another chance to contribute to strengthening security in Europe.

“The Secretary-General is aware of the decision of the United States not to return to the Open Skies Treaty. The Secretary-General expressed regret over the US withdrawal from the DON in November last year, as well as in connection with the recent steps of the Russian Federation towards withdrawal from this treaty,” the source said, responding to a request to comment on the US reluctance to return to the treaty.

According to him, Guterres welcomes the commitment of the remaining states parties to the treaty.

“The Secretary-General … expresses concern about the erosion of the arms control regime between the United States and Russia,” the office said. The arms control and confidence-building regime are beneficial from the point of view of ensuring security for the entire international community – it restricts “competition in the field of strategic weapons,” the UN Secretary- General’s office noted. “In the face of the deteriorating international security situation, this is now more important than ever,” the source said.