Russia is revoking ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty because the irresponsible attitude of the United States to global security, the speaker of the lower house of the Russian parliament said on Tuesday.

President Vladimir Putin, who earlier this month suggested that Russia revoke ratification of the 1996 treaty because the United States had not ratified it, said he was not ready to say whether or not Russia would resume nuclear testing.

“In the interests of ensuring the security of our country, we are withdrawing the ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty,” Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin said ahead of a debate and parliamentary vote on revoking ratification.

Volodin said that while Russia had ratified the treaty in 2000, Washington had failed to ratify because of its “irresponsible attitude to global security issues”.

“The Russian Federation will do everything to protect its citizens and to maintain global strategic parity,” Volodin said.

While Russia is revoking ratification, it will remain a signatory and will continue to cooperate with the test ban treaty organisation and the global monitoring system which alerts the world to any test.

A resumption of nuclear tests by Russia, the United States or China could indicate the start of a new nuclear arms race between the big powers who stopped nuclear testing in the years following the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union.

For many scientists and campaigners, the splurge of nuclear bomb testing during the Cold War indicated the folly of nuclear brinkmanship which could ultimately destroy humanity and contaminate the planet for hundreds of thousands of years.

But the Ukraine war has raised tensions between Moscow and Washington to the highest level since the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis just as China seeks to bolster its nuclear arsenal to accord with its status as an emerging superpower.