September 28, 2014 / 10:29 AM / 5 years ago

Russia's Lavrov says time has come to upgrade nuclear, conventional arms

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov was quoted on Sunday as saying that the time had come for his country to modernize its nuclear and conventional arsenals.

“I don’t think we are on the verge of a new arms race. At least, Russia definitely won’t be part of it. In our case, it’s just that the time has come for us to modernize our nuclear and conventional arsenals,” Lavrov said, according to a transcript of an interview with Russia Today television published on its website.

“We have a long-term armament program, which takes into account our economic situation and, of course, the need to have efficient and modern defensive capabilities to protect our national interest ... We haven’t been doing much in this regard for a number of years,” he added.

Reporting by Gabriela Baczynska; Editing by Andrew Heavens

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