Russian president spoke to Joe Biden earlier in the week about arms control pact due to lapse in February

Vladimir Putin has signed a bill extending the last remaining nuclear arms control treaty between Russia and the United States a week before the pact was due to expire.

Both houses of the Russian parliament voted unanimously on Wednesday to extend the New Start treaty for five years. Putin and the US president, Joe Biden, had discussed the nuclear accord a day earlier, and the Kremlin said they agreed to complete the necessary extension procedures in the next few days.

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