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Senior Diplomat Praises New START: The New START agreement with Russia "is paying big dividends now in strengthening US national security," asserted Rose Gottemoeller, assistant secretary of state for arms control. "Our experience so far demonstrates that the New START treaty is enhancing our national security by building predictability and stability between the United States and Russia, still the world's two largest nuclear powers," wrote Gottemoeller in a blog entry on Dec. 22, the one-year anniversary of the Senate voting in favor of the treaty's ratification. It entered into force in February. Thus far, the United States has conducted 16 on-site inspections of Russian heavy bomber and ICBM bases under the treaty's inspection and verification regime, she said. The Russians also exhibited their RS-24 ICBM under the terms of the treaty, she said. "That was the first time we had a chance to see at first hand the RS-24, the new Russian mobile missile with multiple warheads," noted Gottemoeller.