MOSCOW: President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday announced that Russia would destroy its last chemical weapons, hailing the move as a "historic event" and accusing the United States of not following suit.
"Today the last chemical ammunition from Russia's chemical weapon stockpile will be destroyed," Putin said in televised remarks.
"This is truly a historic event, taking into account the huge amount we inherited from Soviet times that was enough - as experts believed - to destroy all living things many times over," he added.
"This is a huge step towards making the modern world more balanced and safe."
The Russian president also used the speech to needle Washington, saying the United States was not carrying out its international duties in full.
The US "unfortunately is not carrying out its obligations when it comes to the timeframe of destroying chemical weapons - they pushed back the liquidation timeframe already three times," Putin was quoted as saying by Russian news agencies.
Putin said Washington had postponed its plans to destroy its chemical weapons citing insufficient funds, which he said "looked a little bit strange."
"Well okay, we expect the United States to carry out all of its obligations it has taken upon itself as part of international agreements just like other countries do," he added.