During meetings in Washington on June 15 and 16, the United States and Russia signed a protocol extending the Cooperative Threat Reduction (CTR) program for another seven years. The program, created in November 1991 by former Senator Sam Nunn (D-GA) and Senator Richard Lugar (R-IN), assists the former Soviet Union with the destruction and dismantlement of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons, and supports efforts to prevent their proliferation. The protocol, formally known as an "umbrella agreement," provides the legal basis upon which CTR activities may be carried out in Russia through June 2006. It replaces the initial umbrella agreement, in effect since 1992, which expired in mid-June. The United States has concluded similar agreements with Ukraine and other former Soviet states to allow for the commencement of CTR projects.
During fiscal years (FY) 1992-1999, the United States has provided a total of $2.7 billion in CTR assistance to the former Soviet Union, $1.7 billion of which has been allocated for projects in Russia alone. Recognizing that Moscow might not be able to make large financial contributions to the CTR program in the future because of economic problems, the Clinton administration plans to request a total of $2.8 billion for the program through FY 2005, about $1 billion more than originally anticipated. (The request for the current budget cycle, FY 2000, is $475.5 million). According to the Defense Department, the CTR program has already helped Russia eliminate 50 ICBM silos, 284 ICBMs and submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs) and more than 40 heavy bombers.