Haig: more arms, no nuke freeze
Washington — Secretary of State Alexander Haig ruled out revival of the 1979 US-Soviet Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty (SALT II).
''We consider SALT II to be dead,'' he told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. ''We have so informed the Soviet Union and they have accepted and understand that.''
He said Congress must support a planned United States arms buildup and reject a nuclear weapons freeze in order to achieve the reductions President Reagan has proposed. He said support for requests to deploy MX missiles and B-1 bombers is crucial to convince Moscow it faces a balance of arms at a high level in the future unless the Soviet leadership agrees to the President's new proposal to reduce nuclear warheads through arms negotiations.
The administration has said a proposal by Sens. Edward Kennedy (D) of Massachusetts. and Mark Hatfield (R) of Oregon for a US-Soviet freeze followed by negotiated reductions would lock in Soviet nuclear superiority.
Mr. Haig said the administration hoped to begin US-Soviet talks on strategic arms reductions by the end of June, and may announce a specific date in the next several weeks.