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Release of Foreign Relations of the United States, 1981–1988, Volume XI, START I

The Department of State released today Foreign Relations of the United States, 1981–1988, Volume XI, START I.

This is the first of two volumes in the Foreign Relations series devoted to the START I agreement (the “Treaty Between the United States of America and the Union of the Soviet Socialist Republics on the Reduction and Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms”), which President George H.W. Bush and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev signed on July 29, 1991. It begins in the summer of 1981, when the Reagan administration recast the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT) as the Strategic Arms Reduction Talks (START) and concludes in early 1989 with the presidential transition to the Bush administration. Covered here are the initial rounds of negotiations in Geneva from June 1982 to November 1983; the incorporation of START into the Nuclear and Space Arms Talks (NST) in March 1985; the five meetings between Reagan and Gorbachev between 1985 and 1988; and the internal U.S. deliberations on strategic arms negotiations throughout these periods. Given the pivotal role of strategic defenses in negotiations on strategic arms reductions, deliberations and instructions pertaining to the Defense and Space Talks are also included in this volume.

This volume was compiled and edited by James Graham Wilson. The volume and this press release are available on the Office of the Historian website at

Copies of the volume will be available for purchase from the U.S. Government Publishing Office online at (GPO S/N 044-000-02707-1; ISBN 978-0-16-095834-2), or by calling toll-free 1-866-512-1800 (D.C. area 202-512-1800).

For further information, contact

U.S. Department of State

The Lessons of 1989: Freedom and Our Future